It was 3 years ago today that I was forced to say goodbye to a good friend. It was my first blogging community. At the helm was a kind (atleast I thought he was) and giving blogger named @tomfoolery. Then on April 1, 2010 I woke up to this horror of a blog post…
“This is the last post for More Than Useless. Blogging and commenting have been a lot of fun and I really do enjoy it, but maintaining the current format of this site along with the frequency is challenging.
Over the past few months, I’ve had a number of awesome opportunities arise online and offline – I’m passionate about them and excited for the work I’m going to be doing. To that, I want to make sure that I can give each of them the focus and effort that they deserve.
I’m likely going to reboot the site sometime in the future though it will be much more casual in nature (so maintain the RSS subscription if you’re actually interested).
You can still follow me rambling on about a variety of tomfoolery via Twitter, contributing more content to the 8BIT Network, working to push out more awesomeness for the Standard Theme, and focusing on a few other things.
This isn’t an April Fool’s joke. I know, the timing sucks. It never was my thing.”
Sometimes the cruelest April fools jokes aren’t jokes at all.
If this doesn’t make you want to play golf, I don’t know what does.
“It’s not the amount of sin committed that will determine your level of punishment it is the amount of light rejected.” – Pastor Jim Palmer, Miles Road Baptist Church
Yesterday afternoon was rather frustrating. I love what I do as a freelancer but it’s not an easy job and there are some days that make it that much harder. My clients are great people. Many of them are hard-working, honest and great at what they do. It’s my goal to just accent that with the work that I do.
Sometimes, though, I take on a client that becomes a bigger issue than I can afford and I have to cut ties. I recently had one of those ‘clients’ and it didn’t end well. I did everything I could to try to work with them but unfortunately we just couldn’t seem to get on the same page. It came down to a matter of blind expectations that I would work more hours than what we agreed to. I let my judgement slide and continued to work the extra hours hoping the client would see the value I was bringing to the table. In return he increase my pay to match the hours, but as usual, this didn’t happen. He saw the extra work as just part of the gig. Therefore he never saw the value. The big drawback in going through this and trying to make his business a success was that my business suffered.
I learned a long time ago when I was in full-time ministry that you had to set up guards in your life that would prevent someone who couldn’t control their own life to control yours. This same rule applies to my freelance business as well. I can’t let a failing business that is out of control take me down with them. I already stopped investing in businesses but now I need to reconsider my vision for “saving” businesses. I guess I needed to learn this lesson the hard way because I let my guard down and took a huge hit in the process.
After speaking with the client and finding out just how big of a hit my family and I were going to take this month, I had to go for a jog. (It was a short jog since I hadn’t gone for a jog in over a year.)
While on the jog I called my dad who had been in sales most of his career. He understands what it means to ‘take a hit’ because of an unreasonable client.
His advice was simple: “Bean him”
My response was the same as yours probably. “Bean him? What does that mean.” My dad went on to explain that while working in sales he would carry beans in his pocket. When a client would treat him wrong or things just weren’t working out in the relationship, he would reach in his pocket while walking to his car and throw a bean. It was his way of shrugging it off. He said, “You can’t let it bother you or the rest of your business will go down with this one client. You’ve got to get past it and move on.”
Easy for your to say, I thought. So I pleaded my case explaining how much of a sleezeball the client was for misleading me through bonuses and pay increases that never happened. My argument continued with myself while my dad was listening and only took a breath after saying “How can he be such a sleezeball!?” My dad responded with the words that would allow me to move on, “He may be a sleezeball but you found him.” I couldn’t stop laughing.
It’s my responsibility as a freelancer and business owner to choose wisely and keep my guard up.
So I beaned a client yesterday. I’m finished, I learned some valuable lessons and the future is looking good.
One last thing to remember is that although I may have some immediate issues with bills and such, I’ve got a rich and loving heavenly Father who is going to take care of me and my family.
I received some incredible news almost 3 weeks ago but I was hesitant to say anything. I could hardly believe it was true. I even reached out to one of the organizers of the event and jokingly asked if there was an error in the emails that were sent out. There wasn’t any errors and now I’m listed as a speaker for this years WordCamp in ATL! Woot!
I’ve been going to WordCamp Atlanta every time they have held it since 2010. If you don’t know what that it is, it’s an amazing conference for anyone using WordPress. Everyone from developers, designers, users to beginners find incredible value from this conference. The sessions are incredible but the true gold is in the networking that takes place. As you can see from my sidebar image, meeting Matt and getting my picture taken with the rock star was a huge thrill. Hanging out with the 8BIT team and being mistaken for “one of the guys” was beyond awesome.
I was looking over the biblical example of project management according to Nehemiah. If you haven’t heard of this story in the Old Testament of the Bible then you are truly missing out. It is a story that begs the question “What can I do? I’m only a(n) __________.” You fill in the blank. This guy was a trusted servant of the king but he was in charge of one thing, the drinks of the king. That’s it.
Well, moving on tot he real reason I wanted to bring this story up. I was reading through chapter 3 and came across this: “And next unto him builded the men of Jericho.”
What? I though Jericho had been completely obliterated. Nothing was left alive according to the account in Joshua. I already hear the critic screaming “See! It’s full of contradictions!” Not so fast Sherlock. There was one, Rahab according to Joshua 6:23. In fact, there was an entire family with her. Her father, mother, and brothers were saved with her.
What is so impressive to me is that about 1000 years after the fall of Jericho (1550 BC) there was a group of men from Jericho that were rebuilding the wall of Jerusalem (445 BC) next to the priests. They must have been faithful but their faithfulness isn’t the focus of why the God mentions it. God’s faithfulness is to every generation!
Scriptures are amazing!
Right now I feel like someone I respected just sat me down and pointed their big ugly finger at and told me like it was. I have to explain…
I’ve had an idea for the last 18 months or more. Ever since losing my dream job at a church as the Youth/Associate/Web pastor I’ve felt the desire to create a network for web ministry volunteers and professionals where ideas could be exchanged and ministry websites could be easily built, maintained and advanced. I have to say, I’ve tested, prodded, talked, and invested enough to get this thing done. I’ve literally spent weeks fine tuning my ideas to where I felt it was doable only to wake up the next morning to find so much more I needed to do before I could feel comfortable enough to move forward.
Today is different. I’m ready to move forward.
This article by Benny Hsu was the first finger in my face this morning that reaffirmed my process was not a process of failings but of refining. The last 18 months or so of this process has been incredibly draining and,in some ways overwhelming. It is so easy to equate my ‘lack’ of finishing this project and getting it launched with failure after failure. Like Benny said in his article on Tentblogger.com, “I didn’t fail. Instead I realized what I didn’t like to do. That was very important to me because I always had so many ideas, but didn’t know where to start.”
This was the last and final finger I needed in my face today. Chris Ames is incredible at what he does. He was one that took some time with me to help me refine my GREAT idea. I know my idea was most likely not what he had in mind in the article titled “I’M NOT IMPRESSED WITH YOUR GREAT IDEA” but it felt as if I was sitting in my pew on Sunday morning and no one else was in the auditorium except the preacher and me. You know that feeling? Yep.
So here is my GREAT IDEA. WPMinistry.com is my opportunity to share with the web ministry community my thoughts and feelings about the best opportunities to do web ministry using WordPress. That is just a small fraction of my idea.
I developed WPMinistry.net to fill a need I’ve seen among ministries. You can read more about it on the site but basically it allows a small church to sign up for a free account, develop a website with TONS of features designed for churches and ministries, and then upgrade to a monthly subscription fee for help, a domain name, and updates. No need to bother with hosting, domain registrars, looking for developers, or anything else that usually comes with developing a website.
Check it out. It’s still being refined but it is my BIG idea and I’m ready to let the word out.
What do you think? Should I still keep my mouth shut about this?