Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Tools That Make Life Easier

I'm the original procrastinator. Well, maybe not the original but I'll bet I'd come in pretty close to the top ten contenders. I'm forever realizing I haven't done something that I needed to do. Either one of two things happened. I simply forgot or I put it off.

Enter BackPack, a simple online tool that keeps your life more organized. Just make a to do list online and make it your home page on the internet and everytime you connect there it is reminding you of the tasks you need to get done.

And it's much more. You can add notes, files, images and share all of this with others on your work team or family. As you add features there is a small monthly cost. But if it helps keep us procrastinating and disorganized folks and little more structured then It's worth the money.

The second tool I'll mention is an online calendar. This one is free because it's open source. If you use Outlook and use more than one computer then you have the same problem I have. How do I get my calendar on all of my computers without pulling my hair out. Schedule World might just be the answer to your problem. I'm currently experimenting with it and it shows a lot of promise. The cool thing about this is that it also syncs your cellphone or your PDA. Give it a try if you're interested. One word of caution: it's a little complicated to get set up so if you're not computer literate get your buddy to help you.

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Did Blogs Have An Impact On SBC Convention?

Well, not so according to Dr. James Smith of the Florida Baptist Witness.

Dr. James Smith's editorial this week in the Florida Baptist Witness was amusing to me and I think validates a comment that I made earlier on a SBC discussion list.

Those who have been in the field of traditional print media are beginning to feel the pressure of change in the field of journalism and they do not quite know how to handle it.

The following remark of Dr. Smith's might just be the hint that all is not roses when it comes to the future of State Baptist Papers.

"The idea that Weblogs that are read by a very small number of people was definitive in the presidential election grossly fails to appreciate the fact that the annual meeting was held in the winning presidential candidate’s hometown and in the state neighboring his current place of ministry. It also fails to recognize the overriding factor Cooperative Program giving played in the outcome. I know many messengers who voted for Page who most definitely did not take their cues from the bloggers."

It was the phrase "very small number of people" that raised my eyebrow. How many will it take for Dr. Smith to realize that his world is changing?

Dr. Wade Burleson's webblog has received almost a quarter of a million hits since he began it just a little over 6 months ago!!

The cold hard facts are very simple. We are just now beginning to see the potential of the technology that can put print newspapers out of business. Especially State Baptist Papers! And personally, I think there are some Southern Baptist Editors who are concerned for their Futures.

It's a heady thing to be the ONE man who controls the flow of all news in one's state convention through the state Baptist paper - It's quite a different feeling to find out that Joe Blow down at Possum Trot Baptist Church has a blog that is attracting more readership every week than your own editorial piece.

Thursday, June 08, 2006

The Race Is On

Why as a Southern Baptist do I often feel like I’m living a bad country song?

“I’d really like to go to Greensboro this year but the pickup needs an overhaul.”

Maybe it’s because deep down I know I’m a redneck, something even an MDiv. can’t erase.

Like Larry the Cable Guy, I apologize, but some things are just funny.

The SBC Presidential race is beginning to be funny. In fact it’s beginning to sound like George Jones’ old country song, “The Race Is On.” You know the one with the classic line, “Well the race is on and here comes pride up the backstretch.”

Before this baby is over there could be a lot of pride kicking in and kicking out.

We’ve got the first entry, Ronnie Floyd, occupying the pole position. He was the odds on favorite until Frank Page entered the race. It quickly became a contest between CP Loyalty and the “Approved” candidate. But this week when Jerry Sutton, threw his hat in the ring, all bets were off and the race became much more than just a “lesser of two evil” choices matchup.

And make no mistake about it, the SBC Calvinist saw the race between Floyd and Page as a no win race for Calvinists in the SBC. Floyd is the epitome of practical evangelism and the story about the fire engine baptistry whether it was true or not was enough to foam the mouth of any 5-point or even a wannabe Calvinist. Page on the other hand articulated his stand against Calvinism very clearly in a book entitled, Trouble With The TULIP, which Tom Ascol aptly dealt with in his blog earlier. To say that Calvinists were concerned about the two man race is an understatement.

But Jerry Sutton is encouraging to Calvinists in the SBC when he said in an interview with the Southern Baptist Texan, that he is “sympathetic with Reformed Theology.” Since he did his dissertation on Charles Spurgeon he obviously knows that Calvinism does not kill evangelism which has been the mantra of several high profile and outspoken Southern Baptist leader/pastors.

As you can clearly see by now the SBC CALVINIST is backing candidate number three, Jerry Sutton. But the sad reality remains as that Country Song mentality kicks back in, this could be just another case of “The Winner Loses All.”