Category Archives: Small Group

Book Review: Open

Open: What Happens When You Get Real, Get Honest, and Get Open 3DAccountable By Craig Gross

Published by Thomas Nelson
July 2013

ISBN: 978-1-4002-0530-1

Craig Gross is best known for the creation of XXXchurch.com and x3Wtach accountability software.  He is a Author, Speaker and Pastor.  He has a total of 9 books that he has authored.

I took the time to read and re-read this book before writing my review.  The issue of accountability is one that I’m passionate about and I can say that this book is one of the best that I have read on the subject.

Craig starts out by first and foremost addressing the reasons why someone needs accountability.  One of the issues that alot of people face is that they compartmentalize their lives and as a result live parts of their life in secretes.  Craig says “when you start doing things in secret, you can start doing them to excess, and they can spiral out of control.  That’s when you have a problem.” (XIX)   With the common trend of more and more technology that allow us to “connect” electronically with people we are as a result honestly connecting less and less.  He says “We are connected to more poeple than ever before, able to give and receive instantaneous updates on the minutiae of our lives … yet we remain curiously unsatisfied and isolated.” (xx) This pseudo connection is what needs to be addressed in accountability. As Craig puts it “in the long run, that is what accountability is really  about.  Its about living a richer, more fulfilled, more satisfying life.” (xxi).

Craig’s first section addresses the why’s of accountability including real life examples from people like you and me to government employees and issues that have been in the news. He then moves from the whys to what it requires and hits on some of the key ingredients of accountability such as Honesty, Courage, and the need for Help.

He goes into details on ideas of ways to get into accountability and what it requires.  There are so many details and ideas that I could fill many blog posts on, but for now I encourage you to get the book, read it, and personally apply it to your life if your not already in an accountability relationship.  If you are in an accountability relationship the book will provide you with ideas on how to go deeper and grow further as a result. I personally am going to apply what I’ve learned.  This book will be a great reference book in my collection.

To Get Your Own copy go to the following or another book retailer you choose and crack it open:

Amazon

Barnes and Noble

If you order your book before it releases, do it by July 29, 2013 and you can get some more awesome stuff.  Got check it out  here: Click here for awesome pre-release offers. 

Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for writing an honest review. I did not receive any other compensation.

But I did like the book so much that I went out and bought a hard copy to have on my shelf.

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Community

Community
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

For other uses, see Community (disambiguation).
A community is a social group of organisms sharing an environment, normally with shared interests. In human communities, intent, belief, resources, preferences, needs, risks and a number of other conditions may be present and common, affecting the identity of the participants and their degree of cohesiveness.
The word community is derived from the Latin communitas (meaning the same), which is in turn derived from communis, which means “common, public, shared by all or many”[1]. Communis comes from a combination of the Latin prefix con- (which means “together”) and the word munis (which has to do with performing services).

For Those of you who know me personally you know that community is a term and idea that makes me light up. Gets me excited and is at the heart of who I am.
I have been blessed amazing with a group of guys to journey with. Guys who seem/appear to be wanting to care for each other. Its awesome. I’m excited to be part of their journey and to have them be part of mine.
With my seminary classes I have had it reinforced (not that I didn’t already know it) that community and relationship is important. Even thought my current evangelism class is pushing us to share our faith with people we encounter, I am reminded of the important of a relationship and getting new believers connected to the body.
It is important that as the body of Christ we welcome people into our lives. We accept them as they are, sinners loved by the Savior. In community we need to remeber that our past mistakes and bad choices make us who we are. We need to be accepting, loving, and willing to challenge each other to grow.
I seek to walk the walk, and live the life in community.
~tfkr

New Small Group

Well, times change. My old small group that I was part of ended last month. It was sad to part with these guys from our regular meeting as we had been meeting for about 2 years. I wasn’t sure where my next group or connection would come from. But I sought out a new men’s small group. The first meeting was last week (Meeting bi-weekly). I entered the group a bit apprehensive as I didn’t know anyone in the small group. So it was sorta of awkward. However after meeting I felt re-energized. I felt that I found a place where I could be challenged, grow, and have fellowship and accountability.

I’m excited to see what God will do in this new group. God always puts us where we need to be and around people who can both encourage us and challenge us.
~tfkr