Tag Archives: Clean Slate

That Day Points the Way to a Clean Slate

That Day Promo Card 2UP GHBC_gForm 800x200That Day is an amazing, modern day parable about a man who comes before Christ to receive rewards for what he did with his life. (This is the “believer’s judgment” or “bema” as opposed to the “White Throne” judgment.)

The most poignant response I get from people who have seen this story is this: “I didn’t really have such a clear picture of what eternal rewards could look like.” Suddenly, they’ve magnified this simple truth: “I am called and accountable.” The next question that typically comes up is – “now, how do I minimize my losses and maximize the gains for Christ?”

Clean Slate is where we help tease out those ideas and bring clear, biblical thinking to bear on the day to day “to do” along the way. www.zeroinbox.org

This April, we’re excited to present two That Day performances at Greater Heights Baptist Church, here in West Forsyth, on Saturday, April 16th at 7PM and the Sunday morning 11AM service on the 17th. Following that, we will be presenting our Clean Slate – Gospel Driven Productivity workshop for staff and volunteers at the church. With some favor from God and GHBC, we may have room for a few invite only guests. Inbox me for details!

In the meantime, SAVE THE DATE, register for free seats, and keep us in prayer!

I look forward to seeing you on That Day!

AP

2016 Ministry Update – Hard Plowing, Good Fruit?

Last year, Seasons of Life Ministries celebrated 8 years as a public ministry. We faced some of the toughest work in many years: many marriages in great distress, conflicts within regarding short term application of the long term vision, and financial challenges that made us wonder if 2016 would see us walking away from this mission altogether.

In September, we sought outside counsel from an impartial roundtable of “prayed up” believers. Cristine and I presented the ministry’s predicament with all the brutal facts of its then current reality, including the painful 25-30% funding status. Their unanimous responses:

  1. You two are exhausted.
  2. You’ve been faithful with what you’ve been given.
  3. It’s time to bless your family with a steady paycheck.

So, we followed their counsel, sending out Aarron’s resume, interviewing, praying, listening, waiting on God to use someone or some company to bring clarity and peace. Instead, we received a job offer that created nothing but turmoil when it was discussed. We’re so smart it only took us two weeks to figure out it was not only not a God opportunity, it wasn’t even a good opportunity. In the midst of this, we got an invite to present That Day at a church here in Alpharetta. By November, we had presented the best performance yet of our best script yet to a sold out crowd of nearly 300!!! Amazing!

Following this, Aarron picked up some part time work at a local store a mere few minutes away from home and we moved forward as prayerfully and patiently as possible, discipling a limited book of clients, shifting most of them to virtual meetings, reaching out to a very small handful of couples still in distress, and waiting for God’s next move.

In the meantime, we’ve seen a handful of men and women that were in troubled marriages actually walk out the biblical advice we were able to cover with them and appear to be rebuilding their marriages God’s way. Others will still need a whole lot more prayer, because this kind of turnaround doesn’t happen overnight.

After a review of the books at year end, we discovered the numbers we’d given the September roundtable were way off… By year end, God had used dozens of people, families, etc. to fund this ministry to well over 80% of its need. Armed with that information, Aarron began reaching out to his network of contacts with a much clearer vision of what God may be doing with this ministry:

“leading men, women, and couples to overcome barriers to intimacy with Christ”; this time, with greater alignment between vision and strategy.

In a nutshell, we hope with God’s help, to:

  • engage the eyes and ears our broadest audiences with our shorter, “That Day” script;
  • translate those to hearts and minds with our Clean Slate (Gospel Driven Productivity Workshop);
  • encourage hands and feet through one on one discipleship and coaching from there.

Cool News!!!

To that end, we begin a pair of That Day performances on April 16th and 17th that will lead to a three week Clean Slate Workshop series at Greater Heights Baptist Church, here in Cumming. To join us at either, go to www.thatday.info.

We’ll need all available help to make this happen; so, if you feel like you’re particularly gifted with marketing, social media, or just good-old-fashioned prayer, we’d love to invite you to be part of our street team. To lend a heart, hand, or lips, send email to volunteer@seasonsoflifeministries.org. If your gift is giving, we’d like you to know the most challenging months for this ministry are typically May, June, August, and November. So, if you’re a strategic giver – join us anytime, but keep those specific times in mind and prayer. This month, I’d encourage you to pray God keeps us on track with all we have ahead and that He raises up 3 new regular monthly supporters at $50 and $100 each.

Keep our Stay in the Word community in prayer, as well. Though we haven’t been wildly promoting the app, we’re approaching 50-100 users between IOS and Android combined. If you don’t yet have the app, check out what the buzz is all about!

As always, thanks for your prayers, “shares”, and encouragement!

in Christ,

Aarron & Cristine Pina

What Does a Clean Slate Look Like?

Next Webinar Square_Square QuoteEver Felt Overwhelmed?

Ten years ago, I got a job promotion. Sounds good, right? But, without an immediate replacement for my old position, I found myself responsible for both my new job and my old job… for almost 4 months!

In very short order, I started experiencing burnout. All the while, I was being told “work smarter, not harder” by several well meaning colleagues. But, when I asked them “what’s that look like”? No one had any definitive answers that I could immediately put to work. Besides being frustrated, I felt like the light at the end of the tunnel was getting dimmer the harder I worked.

Work Smarter?

After a ton of fervent prayer, God brought to my attention a book by a secular author outlining what appeared to be completely secular ideas and practices. I would later learn he hadn’t taught me anything that God hadn’t already thought of first. Once I understood this framework, I was able to process (not merely “delete”) over 4,500 emails and make a respectable dent in my swelling in basket… in just 72 hours.

Ministry Ventures InfusionI got to share a little of this story with Ministry Ventures’ “Leader Infusion Podcast” last quarter. You can listen to it here.

God has never given us work to do without the perspective needed to accomplish it. Productivity is woven throughout the scriptures, believe it or not, and an experienced guide can help you pick up that trail, if you’re willing to watch and listen. We call it “Clean Slate”. We’ve designed a full day workshop to help men, women, and organizations rethink their work from God’s perspective and remove as many barriers to “productivity” as possible. Stage 1 of engaging with is like “Clean Slate Lite” – a free, introductory webinar that serves as a first step on the road to freedom from overwhelm.

If you’re overcommitted, overwhelmed, or just plain “over it”, carve some time out on Wednesday afternoon, August 12th and attend our introductory webinar “5 Steps to End an Inbox Crisis”. My friend, Don, attended our workshop last year and regularly reminds me how we worked together to get him from thousands of emails in his inbox to “done” in just 5 days. A ministry leader friend who attended our last webinar reminds me that if people actually do what we’re teaching, there’s no reason why they can’t catch up and get ahead when it comes to “to do”.

I hope to see you or someone you love on our upcoming webinar and look forward to helping you do what God designed you to do, further, faster, with greater impact.

  • To attend the webinar, click here and register. We’ll handle the rest.
  • To spread the word on the webinar, click here to watch & share our video.

What Does the Gospel Have to Do with Your Inbox?

Clean Slate 2015_Gospel Driven     Lately, I’ve focused all of my time either on one on one discipleship, couples discipleship, and teaching Gospel Driven Productivity to groups and individuals. In other words, little or no blogging on the topic. We believe Jesus died not only to set us free from sin and death, but also that we may live free, focused, and fruitfully in Christ instead of walking blindly, foolishly, and unproductive in the flesh (see Ephesians 4:22-24, Gal. 5:13, 2 Peter 1:8). This doesn’t guarantee a wrinkle free life devoid of calamity, suffering and distraction in the now. But, it can make the recovery from latter a lot smoother and the (eternal) reward a whole lot fuller. We call it living from a Clean Slate.

As August, 2015 rolls around, we plan to dedicate more time to leaving you a “paper trail” of help: articles to help you dig out of overwhelm and keep you focused on what matters most. Keep your eyes here and we’ll do our level best to regularly push out clear, relevant articles designed to help you develop a Christ centered “distraction recovery plan”.

Boyd Bailey (Wisdom Hunters) and his organization, Ministry Ventures, have been a huge help to Seasons of Life Ministries over the years. Whether you’re an entrepreneur in the for profit sector or a ministry or non-profit leader, MV has a clear, simple set of best practices that can help you go further, faster. (Sounds a little like Clean Slate living, right?) While Boyd and his team are incredibly wise when it comes to organizational leadership, their success is firmly grounded in the wisdom of God. For this reason, I’m leaving a link at the bottom of the post for the Wisdom Hunters Daily Devotional. If you’re not already subscribed to it, don’t leave this post without clicking that link.

Ministry Ventures Infusion     Last quarter, I had the opportunity to sit down with Beth Bennett, Director of Coaching for Ministry Ventures and discuss some of the basics of developing a “comprehensive theology of productivity”, that is… living life from a Clean Slate. Here’s a link to their podcast. http://ow.ly/Qe846

For more on our next Clean Slate Webinar, workshops, or coaching, click above or go to zeroinbox.org.

Grace and peace of Christ and subsequently, a Clean Slate.

AP

Links:

God Designed It, Use It Wisely

Faithbrain-01     Scripture has a lot to say about how we use the gifts, talents, and abilities God has given us. Ever consider what that means when it comes to your brain? Well, as Jesus tells the parable of the talents, we see two servants rewarded for good stewardship of their master’s financial resources and one punished for poor stewardship and excuse making.

Question: If God gave us 100,000,000,000 neurons as a gift to manage for His glory, shouldn’t we be found good stewards of them?

Our Clean Slate Workshop provides attendees with a Gospel centered look at productivity and helps them to manage their workload and “lifeload” with greater intentionality, precision, and efficiency. But, it also gives a deep dive into the neuroscience of what’s holding us back and what propels us forward in all areas of stewardship to God. Bottom line, I get pretty geeked out about the brain, give God the glory for it, and love to share tips and inside info about the brain when it’s in the news. The more you know, the better you can “honor God with your body” and serve Him with the brain that makes it all run.

So, in the interest of helping you “improve your serve”, here are recent news articles that showed up (albeit in an entirely secular column) at the intersection of neuroscience and productivity.

This year, we’ve been able to directly reach nearly 40 people in four cities, from Atlanta to Baton Rouge, through Clean Slate Workshops, webinars, and personal productivity coaching.  Our “let me know when your next event is coming” list is growing very quickly. To join that list and be invited to our next Clean Slate Workshop, email “info@zeroinbox.org” and we’ll update you as soon as we have dates & locations.

Enjoy and serve the King!

AP

You’re Doing What?!

Catch-MeIf you’ve read scripture much, you know that God calls men to the most inconvenient or “impossible” obediences when it’s most… inconvenient and impossible.

Abraham…

Moses…

Nehemiah…

Jesus…

Peter…

You… Me.

But, these were giants of the faith with burning bushes, appearing angels, signs and wonders. I’m just a little guy with a really big question that needs to be answered, right now! This time no man’s answer will do. What do you do when only God has your answer, but the line goes… quiet? Wait on Him and get even “quieter”?

So, here I am. Quiet. Off the radar. Waiting. With a question only God can answer…

The scariest thing to hear from God when lots is happening and “everything” is at stake is “Be still”… for a week?! A big workshop ramping up, webcast publicized, finances tight(est), and the “summer giving slump” ahead. “Something has to be done on a deadline!!! God, this is work only I can do!

“Really? Did you make the world, Aarron?”

Some would say “do the next right thing”. But, if I were me sitting across from that guy, I’d remind him the wisest place for Elijah (at that specific, faith-shaken moment) was in the wilderness, in utter, Godward dependence – that if God is calling him to quiet his soul and wait, “Shh. Sit still.” I’d tell him that running from God is a place he doesn’t want to go. (See the book of Jonah…)

So, if you don’t hear from me by next Wednesday it’s not personal. It’s deeply personal… for me… to be still. I’m off the radar until then. Cleaning the slate. Pray for me, my family, the ministry. It looks like I’m about to step onto a high, narrow ledge by faith alone. I may find it was a lot wider all along and I was needlessly worried… Or, I may fall… only to be caught by the God who sent me. 

(I’d love you to think it’s as glamorous as the cliff diver photo above, but it’s really pretty terrifying. Thanks, for the prayers! – AP)

Change is Good?

Eyes on the Numbers

In our household, I’m the numbers guy – “Guardian of the Financial Spreadsheet”. So, when change comes along, I tend to be the most emotionally impacted by the ramifications: need new tires, classroom supplies, low on peas and coffee, torn dress shirt – you get the point. I’m responsible to calculate the need, lead in prayer for provision, and trust God with His reply and timing.

What’s More Important, Time or Money?

After over 6 years in “ministry as usual”, shifting the balance of what the ministry does on a day to day basis doesn’t only impact my financial spreadsheet – it impacts my calendar, dramatically. Most often, change requires both time and money. When the ministry has most often run “short” financially, it’s hard for me to decide if I’m more “nervous” about the investment of time or the investment of money. Ever been there?

Clean-Slate-Date-StampedWhat’s Different?

Seasons of Life has almost always been a “free service” ministry – there’s only a few things we’ve ever charged money for, and discipleship has never been one of them. It’s always been (and will probably always be) foreign to us to sit down with someone(s), listen to them, point them to scriptural truth, pray for and with them, and then say “Ok, that’ll be x dollars.” However, four wise men in my life have recently (in the same 10 to 14 days, wow!) counseled me, without my asking them, to amp up two existing programs that we do charge for, and focus attention on them: That Day and “Clean Slate“.

Support Badge

The “Now”:

I’m freshly encouraged by the registration numbers in for our April 18th “Clean Slate” workshop. But, this is a small, “pilot episode” and it will be a while before the ministry begins to see a sustainable financial impact from this emphasis on bible-based productivity coaching. I have opened up for promotion 8 dates in this year’s calendar for potential “That Day” performances and will begin marketing this more actively this month. Again, this leaves a gap between the ministry’s current financial situation and a more sustainable future. Including first quarter shortfall and current April needs, we’re less than $11K away from everything being “current” come April 30. This includes staff salary, replacement printer drum & toner, email marketing fees, and support for a couple of local “Speak Life” families in immediate need.

The Match

We currently have a $4,000 pledge in the mix. If we receive donations and pledges meeting that by Tuesday, 4/15, we’ll receive all of that match. That means, to move April forward, I’ve got to ask any and everyone to help us bridge the gap with donations or pledges by then. Please, help out in any way – individually, as families, businesses, or small groups – to make this happen. We’re super grateful for the work God has put before us and very grateful for everyone who continues to support discipleship, Speak Life, Clean Slate, and That Day.  Equally, help us connect people with programs by sharing the links for “That Day” and “Clean Slate” with people you know who could benefit from either.

To Help Directly

Please consider using your online banking service’s automatic bill pay to support – it’s usually free for you and for us. See our support page for details on that and consult your bank’s online banking page to set it up as either one time or regular monthly or quarterly giving. Otherwise, you can also use our online support page to give securely via debit/credit card. If you’d like to pledge toward our matching gift, simply email us at support@seasonsoflifeministries.org and let us know your intent. Thanks, SO much for your support!!!

in Christ,

AP

New Direction or New Focus?

Quick History:

For years, we’ve been meeting in coffee shops, greasy spoons, and across living room coffee tables with men, women, and couples who are either troubled in their walk with Christ or just seeking to avoid getting off track in their walk. And, wherever two men, two women, or two couples have been confronted with the truth of God’s word, life change has happened.

Small groups work. So does discipleship. So, why would we ever consider stepping out of our “sweet spot”? We’re not.

Which-Way-

The Shift?

But, for the past few years, and more specifically the past few months, we’ve felt a nudge to spend a little more time outside of discipleship in order to lead more and new people into more discipleship. We know the value of one on one, but Aarron has also been accused of being very effective in the area of large group speaking, seminars, and performing. Recently, four completely unrelated sources of wise counsel have said the same 3 things:

  1. You’ve already been doing “x” & “y”, too.
  2. You’re really good at “x” & “y”.
  3. Have you considered spending more time doing “x” & “y”?

Meet “X” & “Y”

So, we’re really excited to announce we’re shifting more effort into two existing programs and will be spending as much time as God affords us to reach the lost, the found, and the lost-and-found with them. “That Day”, a one man show about rewards at the judgment seat of Christ has already entertained, informed, and challenged hundreds of men and women in the Metro Atlanta area. We’re making 8 dates available on my calendar for performances through the end of 2014. (Email us for the dates, but think May, June, September and October) In addition, Clean Slate is a bible centered productivity workshop that brings clarity to the confusion and clutter that often attack us on the way to getting things done. We’ve compiled a ton of effective and useful information and presenting it in a half day workshop at the Hyatt Place on Windward Parkway on April 18th from 9 to 2.

How You Can Benefit

Both “That Day” and the Clean Slate Workshop bring their own kingdom value to the table – fun, educational, challenging, and so on.You can benefit from them by attending either, but we need your help with making at least one of those happen:

Clean-Slate-Date-Stamped

  • That Day – Right now we need your help introducing Aarron to pastors, business and bible study leaders, and retreat coordinators. Ask them what they believe about the judgment seat of Christ and invite them to reach out to aarron@seasonsoflifeministries.org to dive deeper into how That Day can witness to those they serve.

  • Clean Slate
    – Registration is now open online. Walk in registration is $125 for the day, but there’s a $40 early bird registration discount up until April 14th. Please, read up on it, look for our upcoming promo video, and share this link with a friend, coworker, colleague, or boss. (This week, we’ll extend an additional $10 off registration to our newsletter readers. Register with this link by Friday, April 10!)