The WHO trumps the WHY
April 28, 2017 by Alton Webb
There are some legit reasons to take steps out of your comfort zone but there are also some bad ones.
A few common drivers that come to mind off the top – the “I’m somebody with something to prove” mantra. Or the lovely “I can do it better than you/them” attitude. Throw in a little dash of bitterness and now you’re cooking.
You cannot own a child of God
July 4, 2016 by Alton Webb
I grew up in a reserved church setting. Occasionally, the pastor would get animated and some old dude in the back would utter “amen” in a deep tone. You could feel the bass of his voice shutter the walls and send a ripple of amens through the pews. Can I get an Amen?
Fourth of July we celebrate freedom. Being an entrepreneur and starter, I think about freedom often. As I reflect on liberty in this season and this week, I’m seeing it through the eyes of my grandmother, whose funeral was Wednesday. Mattie Sarver was 91 and her life of faith in Jesus will be will remembered and celebrated from the kids, to the grandkids, to the great grandkids, on down to the great great grandchild. I’ve been thinking about some things she experienced…Here are a few:
Calvin Coolidge was President when she was born. She lived through a severe worldwide economic depression in the 30’s – Prayed through World War 2 to the Iraq War. Was devastated by Kennedy’s Assassination and thrilled by the Space Race. Went from riding in a horse & buggy to flying in planes. Pay phones to cell phones. Shopping at the Country Store to buying Christmas presents online. Segregation to seeing the first African American president. Alright, I’ll stop.
The journey of freedom for America has proven to be a costly roller coaster and my grandmother’s life gives me greater perspective on the evolution of freedom in the United States. But, I’m even more thankful that she knew of the freedom found in Jesus, which supersedes everything.
Rachel and I went to see the movie, Free State of Jones, this past week. It was intense.
We felt frustrated. And sad. And angry. And disappointed. Rachel was so upset that we almost got up and left at least five times. But…at one point, the main character (Moses), said “You cannot own a child of God.” I sprung up from my reclined position and, without warning to myself or the rows around me, shouted “AMEN!” Can I get another Amen?
So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed. John 8:36
Jesus was never in a hurry.
June 22, 2016 by Alton Webb
Jesus was never in a hurry.
In the first chapter of Mark, Jesus said, “Let us go somewhere else-to the nearby villages-so I can preach there also. That is why I have come.” Perfect purpose wasn’t rushed. It was steady. All the way to the cross. He knew why He came and it wasn’t to stay put. Jesus was fully equipped and moved in the Father’s timing.
Why are we so hurried? We always want to stay a few steps ahead, sometimes willing to try to push God out of the way if He slows us down. Or sometimes we have the opposite problem. We drag our feet and placate the gentle nudge that God gives in everyday life? Maybe it’s not switching jobs or international trips to feed children, maybe it’s the opportunity to volunteer in your child’s classroom, commit to a local church, or to react in kindness instead of rage. Maybe the time is now.
Instead of spending our energy trying to speed up or slow down situations and decisions in our life, what if we focused on how God might be equipping us to do what He puts in front of us.
God doesn’t necessarily call the equipped but he always, without a doubt, equips the called. Translation (in less churchy terms): God isn’t cherry-picking the people who have their stuff together to do his work. He decides to use us (in all of our sloppy, messed-up splendor) and gives us all of the abilities and resources we need to do what He has planned.
I told God that I’m not a Bible scholar. I didn’t go to seminary. I’m a small business owner. An entrepreneur. God made me a pastor. I didn’t like to read as a child. My wife says I like to make up my own words. I’ve never thought of myself as a writer. God made me an author. See a theme here?
God uses me in the areas I feel most inadequate and useful – lots. I trust His ways more than my own. Writing and publishing Go Outside is the perfect example. You can hear more about the crazy (and fun) process of becoming an author on my podcast with my literary agent, Esther Fedorkevich. Check it out here.
I had unanswered questions the entire time I was writing Go Outside. Will I ever get this finished in a solid format? How long will it take? How do I make sure it’s done right? Who can I find that believes in the vision and shares my values and passion for meeting Jesus outside the camp?
Here I am, looking down at a real book (with a cover and pages and words) that I wrote with the help of the Fedd Agency. That, my friends, is proof that God gets a kick out of using normal (or what he refers to as unschooled, ordinary men in Acts 4:13-14) to do take part in spreading His message of hope and adventure in Christ to the world.
Let us then go to him outside the camp… (Hebrews 13:11-14).
Get your very own copy of Go Outside – Click Here!
My Soccer Dad
June 20, 2016 by Alton Webb
My father invested in me throughout my life.
He’s always been slow to judge and given me space to learn & grow, while still demonstrating a strength that cares. He taught me what it looked like to “Go Outside” from an early age. Sure, he wasn’t perfect, but he modeled relentless faith and consistency.
There are numerous examples of his all-in approach, but the picture captures it best . Soccer wasn’t a popular sport when I was growing up. My Dad never had played, but he stepped up when we needed a coach. It made a huge impact on me, but I wasn’t the only one – my friends today still talk about Dad being their coach back in the day.
So guess who always is ready to sign up when it’s time to coach?
Go Outside – Now available on Amazon Prime and Kindle
June 9, 2016 by Janal Watts
Rotary Club – Going Outside
June 7, 2016 by Alton Webb
Local associations like the Rotary Club have been around for decades. Many of these community volunteers, or dare I say – Outsiders – have been doing good work that others didn’t want to do…like working the county fair ticket gates on a volunteer basis. I was honored to speak at our local club today and share the vision of Going Outside. Many of the attendees have inspired me over the years and it was great to be with them all.
AND, we sold some books!
You can get your copy here. Keep going!
Uncle Don – My Hero & True Outsider
May 30, 2016 by Alton Webb
Several years ago I started to develop this unending notion that I needed to go visit my Uncle Don. He lived more then 2 hours away. Perhaps that’s why I procrastinated for longer then I care to admit – I didn’t make it a priority.Fast forward to 2014. I needed to go past Uncle Don’s hometown for real estate work and decided to give him a call. One of the best things I’ve ever done.Don was 88 when we visited that morning over coffee at a Shoney’s Restaurant.Don was a hero of mine. He fought overseas from one bunker to another, carrying machine guns during WWII. Amazing. A legit example of the greatest generation. In this, and in all things, he served and fulfilled his duty honorably.As we sat in a small booth, Don talked about his wife Martha. They were married to for over 50 years. He spoke of her beauty and how he missed her. He talked about his 30 years with the National Park Service. He shared his joy in Jesus and encouraged me in the faith.Not much later, my Uncle Don passed away at the age of 90. So happy we had that time together.This Memorial Day I feel blessed to say that Don is my uncle – and my hero.
Entrepreneur Power Lunch
May 21, 2016 by Janal Watts
Wayne Gretzky said “You miss 100 percent of the shots you don’t take.”
He’s so right.
I love being with other entrepreneurs and starters – they’ve taken that big step of faith and given it a shot…why not!!??! So, this week when a group of 50 entrepreneurs came together at the Brick Room it was like home sweet home for me!
One of my best friends, Torrey Smith was the host. He invited me to speak about Go Outside. The National Christian Foundation helped sponsor the event and donated copies of Go Outside to each attendee – that was super generous and we were so honored. Make sure to check their services out here: The National Christian Foundation.
One of my favorite parts was at the beginning. Each attendee introduced themselves and shared their current passion or personal pursuit. The collective stories in the room seemed to be building to one united crescendo. So many cool things happening in the lives of Christ followers. We were all ready to #getupgetout!
It was deeply encouraging and my prayer is that Go Outside will be a helpful tool for those in attendance and other Outsiders who are DONE with the status quo.
Go Outside – Available Now
May 12, 2016 by Alton Webb
My first book, Go Outside, is available online for the FIRST TIME TODAY.
Let me back up…
Rachel and I are still overwhelmed by the support that our hometown showed us @ the Go Outside release party this past week. When I sat down at the table to greet people and sign a few books (if people wanted me to), I was not prepared for the steady line of family and friends, along with many people I was meeting for the first time! All gracious and ridiculously encouraging. My face was bright red.
Our team’s hard work preparing, planning, and spreading the word about the evening was evident. Lots of folks who let us share their stories in Go Outside were there – that meant so much. To all of you who came, bought a book, or just showed your support…we are grateful. A special thanks to our literary agent and publisher, The Fedd Agency – who came from Austin, Texas to share in the moment. Incredible.
The stories and early reviews are starting to come in and it’s been the best part:
Oh my goodness! Just finished @altonleewebb debut book GO OUTSIDE in one sitting-it’s that good #getupgetout @Meganterry01
Last night I went to Alton Lee Webb’s book signing for, ‘Go Outside’. I started reading it as soon as I got home yesterday and woke up ready to jump back into it this morning. Such an amazing and wonderful story! Thank you! #getupgetout #gooutside #imreadytobeanoutsider – Christal
Read the first 50 pages of the book last night. Good stuff my friend. – Austin
I love the Birdcage story – I plan to get one! – Donna
Naturally, we are still super excited to see the adventure continue. We are praying that each book sold will be the shot of inspiration people need to trust and follow Jesus into the action – where He is leading. Who wants to stay on the bench anyway?
So, if you weren’t able to make the release event, no worries.
Today we are offering the book online FOR THE FIRST TIME. Click Here to Buy Now!
We’d love and appreciate your help…It’s time to spread and share Go Outside with the world. We can’t wait to hear your story about how and where God takes you OUTSIDE.
It’s Here Y’all
April 27, 2016 by Alton Webb
It was just a normal day in our subdivision. Kids playing everywhere, looking for their next popsicle. Neighbors and friends out in their yards. Our garage door open spilling out with riding toys, ya know. But then it appeared. Had to be at least 60 feet of tractor and trailer. I knew exactly what it was and when it was coming. (I had only called the driver at least three times within 22 minutes.) He was FINALLY there.
That truck was full of precious cargo. Well, at least it was to our family. Go Outside, the book arrived. In a small way, it was sorta like a new baby coming home. Except, well, there were 1000 of them. Our kids and our neighbors and their kids walked over to celebrate with us. Heck, even Chandra Heath (a new author) who lives across the street was there to share the moment.
It’s here y’all. Can’t wait to share it with you. It’s time for everyday people – like me and like you – to get up, to go out, and to change the world. It’s not an option. It’s an urgent mandate.
…Jesus suffered and died outside the city gates to make his people holy by means of his own blood. So let us go out to him, outside the camp…” Hebrews 13:12-13 NLT