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Kate McRae

Kate_McRae

On Monday, June 29, 2009 I received a phone call from Aaron McRae, a friend of mine that I work with at Cornerstone Chandler. His daughter Kate, who was 5 years old at the time, had just been admitted to Phoenix Children’s Hospital and been diagnosed with brain cancer. It’s so bizarre to think that just the night before their kids were over so Holly and Aaron could go out on a date. Kate and my daughter Kennedy were set to begin Kindergarten together in the fall…man, how everything can change with a simple phone call. Together we drove to the hospital, and I tried to make small talk to keep his mind off of what we were about to walk into. We soon would find out the road that was in front of the McRae family. For the past 10 months Kate and her family have battled through an experimental treatment plan that has included brain surgery, 6 rounds of chemotherapy, stem cell transplant therapy (her own cells), and now radiation in Houston. I’ve been honored to walk each step of the way with my friends as they’ve continued to live this moment in an absolute Christ like fashion. I’ve wondered if I’d respond as well if the moment were mine… For those of you who are unfamiliar with Kate’s story you can follow along here.

On May the 4th at 6:30pm my wife is hosting a Pampered Chef Party in honor of the McRae family. The Pampered Chef Rep for the party, Trudy Maples, has donated 100% of her commission to the McRae family and the Hostess benefits are being donated to Holly McRae to allow her to order much needed supplies for her kitchen. Thankfully the McRae family has been receiving meals cooked by others since July of 2009. However, Holly has mentioned that she is looking forward to cooking again for the family once they return from treatment in Houston and getting back to some sense of normalcy.

If this is something that you would like to participate in you can order online here. Just make sure that when you are placing an order that you type in Lisa Alexander as the host so that the McRae’s will receive the benefits! While many have contributed in various ways to bless Kate over the past year, this is something that we can do together to bless Holly.


Posted in Family, Spiritual Formation

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What we can learn from crisis

Truck_crash_2

This past weekend I was sitting in a line of traffic waiting for a train to pass, innocently counting the cars on the train when WHAM!!! Once I gathered my wits about me I realized that I had just been hit. I pulled off to the side of the road and the gentleman in the giant tank of a brand new Tahoe that just plowed into me came up to check on me (very polite of him). Later that day the insurance adjuster made it over to the auto shop that the truck had been towed to and what we had speculated about became reality. He told me that it was totaled. He said that the vehicle did exactly what it was designed to do in a moment like that, protect the driver and passengers by absorbing the shock of the impact. With a speed limit of 45mph, and no skid marks, the back of my truck crinkled up like used wrapping paper from my daughters’ 5th birthday party which happened later that evening. It’s interesting to me that they design vehicles these days to absorb the shock of the impact of an accident, and fortunately for me they do.

That statement the insurance adjuster made, that I was lucky the truck did what it was designed to do in the accident made me think, among other things, about crisis. Specifically that you and I can learn a lot about ourselves, the people around us, and the organizations that we lead in a moment of crisis. Here are a couple of thoughts that may help.

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Posted in Family, Leadership, Spiritual Formation

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Asking the right questions about time management Part-2

Time_Management

Poor time management wastes everybody’s time but most importantly it wastes the time of the leader. Which means the leader is not spending time on moving the organization forward to its desired future. Getting rid of what wastes your time as a leader is essential if you plan on spending your time on what you need to. But getting rid of what wastes your time should not simply be limited to your personal calendar as a leader but occasionally needs to be looked at through the lens of the organization as well. Here are four more great categories suggested by Peter Drucker to take a look at when evaluating your time and the time of the organization you’re leading.

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Posted in Leadership

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Asking the right questions about time management Part-1

Time_Management

Most leaders will agree that the three major limiting factors to actually getting work done are money, people, and time. It is the primary job of every leader to give their teams as much of these three resources as possible to get their jobs completed. In fact when someone is failing to perform well in their role on the team, more often than not it has to do with one of these three resources not being in adequate supply to get the job done. Even in these tough economic times there is more than enough money out there to get a compelling dream financed and people can always be recruited and hired. But there is no sales pitch you can give, no manner to recruit, and no way to purchase more time. It is the ultimate limiting resource to getting work done. In his book, “The Effective Executive,” Peter Drucker put it this way.

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Posted in Leadership

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the ultimate discipline checklist

One of the most difficult challenges and hotly contested issues when it comes to parenting is discipline. I mean people get radically passionate when it comes to their favorite method of discipline. And I get being passionate about your kids, trust me, I’m drop dead crazy about the three God has entrusted to me. But I’ve got to be honest and admit that it’s almost comical how people turn into zealots when this topic comes up, especially in “Church-World.” In my opinion effective discipline is just not as complicated as we’ve made it. Effective discipline has far more to do with consistency, follow through, and planning than anything else. Do the actual methods, style, and attitude matter? Sure they do. But not nearly as much as consistency, follow through, and planning. Without turning this into a 5 part post or a book to prove my point, let me just share one small quote here with you.

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Posted in Family