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    All posts in "book"

    Book Signing – Rooftop Reflections

    When are you going to have a book signing?

    This is a question I’ve been asked over and over again.

    It’s a humbling question.  And to be honest, answering the question with action has actually scared me.

    I’ve made excuse after excuse, and I’ve put off hosting this kind of event…until now.

    That’s right!  I’m pleased to announce I’ll be holding my first book signing event this summer.

    Here are the details:

    Rooftop Reflections Book Signing

    August 18, 2018

    10AM – 1PM

    Schwenksville, PA

    for more details and to RSVP:  rooftopreflections.com/booksigning

    This will be an opportunity to get your own signed copy of Rooftop Reflections and to help further ministry to widows and orphans in Guatemala.

    Books I’ve Read So Far This Year (Part 3)

    The past two days, I posted a list of the first 20 books I’ve read in 2018 (click here to see part one of the list and click here to see part two of the list).  Here’s the next group of books on the list:

    The No Complaining Rule: Positive Ways to Deal with Negativity at Work by Jon Gordon – I’ve read one or two other books by Jon Gordon, and I really like his writing.  He uses storytelling to teach business, leadership, and life principles.  This book shows you how you can change a lot by removing complaining.  [Note:  I read the Audible version of this book.]

    The Four Obsessions of an Extraordinary Executive: A Leadership Fable by Patrick Lencioni – This is another book I picked up at our local library for 50 cents (or a dollar).  I read this book while I was camping in the Poconos over Memorial Day weekend.  I really enjoyed this book that has a similar feel to the Jon Gordon book above and the previous Patrick Lencioni book I read earlier in the year.  If you want to be an extraordinary leader, you just may want to pick up a copy of this book.  [Note:  I read the hardcover version of this book.]

    The ONE Thing: The Surprisingly Simple Truth Behind Extraordinary Results by Gary Keller – Everybody talks about this book, so I decided I should give it a try.  Gary Keller (of Keller-Williams) describes the remarkable difference we can make when we resist the urge to dilute our attention.  Honestly, I struggle in this area.  I’m too spread out in my focus, and this book was a great reminder of the importance of narrowing our focus.  [Note:  I read the Audible version of this book.]

    The Coaching Habit: Say Less, Ask More & Change the Way You Lead Forever by Michael Bungay Stanier – I have the opportunity to coach at home, at work, at church, and in my on-line endeavors.  This book was an important read for me.  I truly want to help people succeed, and this book packs a valuable punch by teaching a structure that will help you get the most out of your coaching conversations.  [Note:  I read the audible version of this book.]

    No Fail Meetings: 5 Steps to Orchestrate Productive Meetings (and Avoid All the Rest)  by Michael Hyatt – When I heard this book was coming out, I immediately pre-ordered it.  I knew this book at power to change the way I lead and participate in meetings.  (My second book on meetings this year.)  Michael Hyatt didn’t disappoint in this concise explanation of how to make meetings more productive.  [Note:  I read the hardcover version and the audio version of this book.]

    Hamilton: The Revolution by Lin-Manuel Miranda and Jeremy McCarter – The Hamilton Craze has been sweeping our country for the past year or two.  I saw In The Heights, Lin-Manuel Miranda’s earlier musical, and I knew I wanted to know more about Hamilton.  This book provides a unique look into the story of Hamilton, the man and the musical.  [Note:  I read the Audible version of this book.]

    Imperfect: An Improbable Life by Jim Abbott and Tim Brown – I’m a big baseball fan.  When I saw this for sale in the used book area of our local library, I knew I had to pick it up for my own reading pleasure.  I really enjoyed getting to know more about Jim Abbott, about his career, and about his life and struggles as told throughout the pages of the book.  Abbott overcame unbelievable odds and obstacles to make it to Major League Baseball.  [Note:  I read the hardcover version of this book.]

    Why Suffering?: FInding Meaning and Comfort When Life Doesn’t Make Sense by Ravi Zacharias and Vince Vitale – When I was in college, I had the honor of hearing Ravi Zacharias speak at Intervarsity Urbana missions conference.  I knew I was listening to someone with a lot of wisdom.  I’ve experience some suffering in my life, but I’ve honestly been very blessed as well.  This book gave me a refreshing perspective on suffering.  [Note:  I read the Audible version of this book.]

    Make College Count: A Faithful Guide to Life and Learning by Derek Melleby – My friend, Sean McFeely, recommended this book when I told him about Isaac’s “Year of Discipleship”.  We read this as our sixth book, and it provided practical reminders for high school students getting ready to transition to life and/or college.  [Note:  I read the paperback version of this book.]

    Due to the overall length of this material, I will be breaking it up into a few posts.  Stay tuned for the continuation of my 2018 reading list.  I’ve read one or two other books, but I’ll wait until I get to book number 40 before posting the next post in this series.  Stay tuned!

    What book(s) have you read this year?  Share in the comments below.

    [Note:  There are affiliate links in this post.  If you make a purchase as a result of clicking on any of these links, I may receive a small affiliate commission.  This should not impact the pricing you see on any of these products.  Thanks in advance if you happen to purchase one of these books by clicking on one of the links above.]

    Books I’ve Read So Far This Year (Part 2)

    Yesterday, I posted a list of the first 10 books I’ve read in 2018 (click here to see part one of the list).  Here’s the next group of books on the list:

    From Pride to Humility: A Biblical Perspective by Stuart Scott (not the former ESPN analyst) – This was another resource I picked up to prepare for teaching the Stretched Men Group.  This is actually an excerpt from one of Stuart’s larger works.  The concise nature of this book makes it a quick, easy, and useful read.  [Note:  I read the paperback version of this book.]

    The Purpose Driven Life: What on Earth Am I Here For? by Rick Warren – I read this book several years ago, but I revisited it again as Isaac and I used it as our third book in his “Year of Discipleship”.  Rick Warren provides a very important text here in reminding us of our God-given purpose in life.  If you’re unsure of your purpose, you should read this book.  [Note:  I read the Audible version of this book.]

    The Five Temptations of a CEO: A Leadership Fable by Patrick Lencioni – I picked up a copy of this book for 50 cents (or a dollar) at our local library.  The title caught my eye as I have been growing in my leadership role and responsibility at work especially over the past couple of years.  Patrick Lencioni weaves an excellent story to help bring out valuable leadership advice – especially for those running their companies.  [Note:  I read the hardcover version of this book.]

    Finding Favor: God’s Blessings Beyond Health, Wealth, and Happiness by Brian Jones – I had the privilege of being part of the Finding Favor Launch Team.  As such, I had the opportunity of reading a pre-release version of the book.  This book changed the way I prayed about a specific situation in my life.  Brian Jones will challenge you too to think differently about God’s favor in your life.  [Note:  I read the pre-release digital version of this book.]

    Love Does: Discover a Secretly Incredible Life in an Ordinary World by Bob Goff – This was my second time through this book, and Love Does was the fourth book in Isaac’s “Year of Discipleship”.  What a FANTASTIC book!  Bob Goff finds a way to challenge you, make you smile, and make you cry as he tells personal stories of sharing God’s love in whimsical fashion.  This is a must-read!  [Note:  I read the Audible version of this book.]

    The Miracle Morning: The Not-So-Obvious Secret Guaranteed to Transform Your Life (Before 8AM) by Hal Elrod – I had heard about this book before, and I decided to give it a read.  This book confirmed many of the things I have already put into my morning routine.  The book also provided an inspiring look into the life of Hal Elrod.  [Note:  I read the Audible version of this book.]

    Everybody Always: Becoming Love in a World Full of Setbacks and Difficult People by Bob Goff – Having read Love Does, I knew I had to pick up a copy of Bob’s newest book.  This did not disappoint.  This is another must-read.  Bob’s stories will leave you in stitches, in tears, and inspired to love those around you.  [Note:  I read the paperback version of this book.]

    Originals: How Non-Conformists Move the World by Adam Grant – My friend, Ellory Wells, recommended this book to me a couple years ago, and I finally got around to reading it this year.  Adam Grant uses stories from the past to show how original people have had an impact on this world.  [Note:  I read the Audible version of this book.]

    How to Win Friends & Influence People by Dale Carnegie  – This classic was the fifth book in Isaac’s “Year of Discipleship”.  I had been introduced to Carnegie’s principles before, but this was the first time through this book.  I appreciated the common-sense reminders throughout the book of how we should treat other people.  [Note:  I read the Audible version of this book.]

    Toxic Charity: How Churches and Charities Hurt Those They Help, And How to Reverse It by Robert D. Lupton – This book came at the recommendation of my friend, Shawn Smith.  Shawn and I share a passion for sharing God’s love in Guatemala.  When Shawn heard Leanne and I were wrestling through how to help in Guatemala, he suggested this book.  This book really challenged us and gave us new things to think about as we prepare to serve there again.  [Note:  I read the Audible version of this book.]

    Due to the overall length of this material, I will be breaking it up into a few posts.  Stay tuned for the continuation of my 2018 reading list.

    What book(s) have you read this year?  Share in the comments below.

    [Note:  There are affiliate links in this post.  If you make a purchase as a result of clicking on any of these links, I may receive a small affiliate commission.  This should not impact the pricing you see on any of these products.  Thanks in advance if you happen to purchase one of these books by clicking on one of the links above.]

    Books I’ve Read So Far This Year (Part 1)

    At the beginning of this year (2018), I set a goal to read at least 52 books – one book per week on average.  I’m happy to say I’m on track to achieve my goal.

    Reading is an important discipline.  It provides new and different perspectives for learning and STRETCHING.  It provides a fun escape to other times and other places.  And reading helps keep your brain flexible.

    Here’s a list of the books I’ve read so far this year:

    Building A Story Brand by Donald Miller – This book provides excellent tips on positioning yourself as a teacher or a guide for your customer.  It also teaches you to make your customer the hero of the story.  I really appreciated Donald Miller’s teaching in this valuable resource. [Note:  I read the hardcover version of this book.]

    Play the Man by Mark Batterson – I used this book as part of my Stretched Men Group (mastermind group for men).  This book lays out the framework for intentionally discipling your sons.  Play the Man inspired me to put in motion a “Year of Discipleship” with my own son that has included reading seven books and taking a life-changing trip to Washington State (more on that in a future post).  [Note:  I read the hardcover version of this book.]

    The Big Leap by Gay Hendricks – I read this book at the recommendation of Cliff Ravenscraft.  The book talks about dealing with your limiting beliefs in order to be the person you were meant to be.  Many of us get stuck in the routines of life.  We are often too scared to break out of these comfort areas to go after something bigger and better.  This book will make you think again about how you are living your life.  [Note:  I read the paperback version of this book.]

    The Book of Mistakes by Skip Prichard – I had the privilege of reading this book as part of the launch team for the book.  The book teaches important leadership advice through the masterful storytelling of Skip Prichard.  Once I started reading this book I couldn’t put it down.  [Note:  I read pre-release digital  version of this book.]

    The Graduate Survival Guide: 5 Mistakes You Can’t Afford to Make in College by Anthony ONeal and Rachel Cruze – This is the first book Isaac and I read together as part of his “Year of Discipleship”.  This book simply outlines important reminders for students as they make the transition from high school to college.  As this book was released as part of the Dave Ramsey organization, there are a lot of solid financial tips in this practical guidebook.  [Note:  I read the hardcover version of this book.]

    Let’s Stop Meeting Like This by Dick and Emily Axelrod – I received a free copy of this book to read in exchange for a review.  I liked this book.  It provides practical tips for running more effective meetings.  In my position, I sit in a lot of meetings, and I also facilitate a lot of meetings.  This book was a big help!  [Note:  I read the paperback version of this book.]

    The #1 Secret of Genuinely Happy People by Brian Jones – I received a free copy of this eBook when I signed up to receive Brian’s newsletter.  This book was simple, practical, helpful, and inspiring.  If you are looking for a quick and helpful read, check it out.  [Note:  I read the digital eBook version of this book.]

    Wealth Is It Worth It? by S. Truett Cathy (founder of Chick-Fil-A) – Common sense advice and stories from a true business person of character, Truett Cathy provides fantastic leadership and financial wisdom in this handbook.  [Note:  I read the hardcover version of this book.]

    No Compromise: The Life Story of Keith Green by Melody Green – This is the second book Isaac and I read together as part of our “Year of Discipleship”.  This biography tells the riveting story of Keith Green from his youth as a seeking Christian Scientist to his life of sold-out commitment to Jesus Christ.  [Note:  I read the paperback version of this book.]

    Motives of the Heart: A Biblical Study on Pride and Humility by Reb Bradley – I picked up this short book to help me prepare for some teaching I was doing for my Stretched Men Group.  This helpful resource dives into the Bible to find helpful teaching and verses on pride and humility.  [Note:  I read the paperback version of this book.]

    Due to the overall length of this material, I will be breaking it up into a few posts.  Stay tuned for the continuation of my 2018 reading list.

    What book(s) have you read this year?  Share in the comments below.

    [Note:  There are affiliate links in this post.  If you make a purchase as a result of clicking on any of these links, I may receive a small affiliate commission.  This should not impact the pricing you see on any of these products.  Thanks in advance if you happen to purchase one of these books by clicking on one of the links above.]

    Rooftop Reflections – My New Book Has Arrived!

    TODAY is the day!

    Rooftop Reflections is officially available on Amazon.com for all the world to see, purchase, and review.

    I’m truly praying this book will have an impact on readers which will hopefully result in having an impact on churches, communities, and the world.

    This process of writing and launching this book has taken me down a wonderful journey – a journey which has confirmed to me that we are meant to be part of something EXTRAORDINARY.  Too many of us are stuck in the ordinary (or at least the perception of ordinary).  I know, because this was my story.  It all changed when a young youth pastor at my church invited me to go to Guatemala in 2012 with him and a bunch of high school students.  I was the guy working in corporate America trying to keep these running smoothly for my family and my life in general.

    To steal a phrase from Jeff Goins, Guatemala WRECKED me.  In fact, it flipped my world upside down and caused me to look at things differently – in an EXTRAORDINARY way.

    Purchase your copy of Rooftop Reflections – Missional Thoughts of an Ordinary Guy in an Extraordinary Place TODAY by clicking HERE.

    For more information about the book, I’d encourage you to go to the book website at rooftopreflections.com.

    Join the Launch Team for My New Book #RooftopReflections

    The most anxious time was during launch, just because that is so dramatic.

    Sally Ride

    ONE MONTH FROM TODAY, my upcoming book (Rooftop Reflections) officially releases.
    The book is ready to go, but there is still work to do before I can release the book to the world.
    This is where I could really use your help.

    In today’s world, a successful book release requires the support of a lot of people.  Gaining traffic and traction for a book launch happens when people talk about the book and share it with their friends, family, and colleagues.  It happens when people introduce the book and the author to other people with influence.

    Rooftop Reflections is all about encouraging readers to move from the ordinary to find the extraordinary in their lives.  The book shares my story and passion for Guatemala, and it challenges readers to find ways to serve their neighbors around the world and right next door.

    Today, I am officially starting the Rooftop Reflections Launch Team.  If you think you can help, I’d love to invite you to join the team.

    When you join the launch team, you get…

    When you sign up for the Rooftop Reflections Launch Team, you’ll get a pre-release PDF version of the book, and you’ll get access to the Rooftop Reflections Launch Team Facebook Group.  In addition, you’ll get updates on the book release.

    When you join the launch team, you agree to help…

    In exchange for joining the Rooftop Reflections Launch Team, I’m asking you to post a review for the book over at Amazon.com.  I’m also asking you to promote the book and share your ideas for making the book launch a BIG SUCCESS.

    To sign up for the Rooftop Reflections Launch Team, go over to the book website at rooftopreflections.com and hit the link to Join the Team.

    (If you know someone who is a perfect fit for the launch team, please pass this along to them and encourage them to sign up TODAY.)

    Thanks in advance for you help!

     

    Don’t Forget This Deal on Cyber Monday

    CYBER MONDAY

    The Monday after Thanksgiving has become a big day for shoppers.  Last year, shoppers purchased nearly $2.7 Billion on-line on Cyber Monday.  Cyber Monday was created by marketers to lure shoppers like you and me into purchasing on-line.  Shoppers are enticed with “deals”, discounts, and the allure of avoiding the chaos of in-store shopping.

    I don’t know about you, but my family has found it much easier to shop on-line.  We get the things we want and need for the holidays without the pressure of the in-store experience.

    Since it’s Cyber Monday and I know you are looking for that perfect gift for that special someone, I thought I should remind you of a gift that everyone wants and needs:

    My book, On Track: Life Lessons from the Track & Field is available on-line at Amazon.com for less than $3.00.  This is the perfect stocking-stuffer or gift for anyone.

    Here’s what several reviewers had to say about On Track:

    It would be very easy for someone to read the title of this short book and think, “I only watch track every four years during the Olympics…this book isn’t for me.” The author does indeed talk about track and field, mostly at the high school level and in a very light and approachable way. But what this book really does is remind the reader that we all are surrounded in our everyday lives with little things that can help us grow, comfort us, or even kick us in the pants. We just need to be paying attention.

    The beauty in this book is the way in which the author sees lessons in the little things, like the way sprinters set up their starting blocks. You do not need to be a fan of track and field to appreciate these observations. I believe that the author is more hoping to arm the reader with a few tools to look for lessons in their own everyday events that are relevant to their lives. Intentional or not, the book certainly did this for me. “On Track” then ties these observations back to recognizable verses of scripture. Much as the author hopes we’ll draw on our own memorable stories in our lives, he provides these memorable scripture passages for us to draw on as well.

    I wouldn’t read this book expecting to learn much about track and field. That’s not really the point. This is a great little book to have on hand for those times that you find life getting off track (pun very much intended). It is a quick read that I will be returning to from time to time to get back On Track.  Brian S. Willem

    This book is an easy read and well thought out. Jon writes life lessons in parallel with track and field events, he leads us from the starting blocks to the finish line. Whether you know track and field or not, this book is an inspiring work and leaves me wanting to read more and more of Jon’s writing. Bravo for leading the pack on your first book Jon!! Chris Vonada

    Such a great read! Jon does a great job relating track and field concepts to our lives in this book. Whether coming out of the starting blocks, overcoming obstacles, or finishing strong, he incorporates stories from his own life and his kids’ lives and connects those with things that we face every day.

    As a former hurdler and runner, I could especially identify with his stories and challenges and it took me back to my track days. On Track is a great book for anyone who wants to grow, be stretched, and be encouraged in their role at home, work, and in daily life. I highly recommend it. Great job Jon!  Shawn Washburn

    Love that Jon incorporates his faith into his passions in life – into his family, his running, his job. On Track demonstrates how learning good, strong habits and practices are a life learning not just compartmentalized into a sport. Great read for the whole family, and would be great as a small group discussion guide. Good job, Jon! Looking forward to lots more from this new author.  Diane Karchner

    Jon takes us on a journey with his love of God and his love of running. There are many lessons of life molding these two loves together. You really get a sense of Jon’s dedication to living life to the fullest and enjoying the gifts God has equipped each of us.  S. Young

    Jon offers a tidy little book, a parable if you will, comparing life to running at a track meet. Readers will enjoy sharing the author’s personal experiences and will find the extra boost they are looking for to get their life back on track. An easy, enjoyable and worthwhile read.  Matt Appling

    In this book, Jon does a fantastic job of teaching both about track and field (for those who are too familiar) and about life. Several key factors from the starting blocks to the finish line help to show you how to keep your life “On Track”.  Joshua Rivers

    Go on-line and order your copy of On Track TODAY.

    (If you’d like an autographed copy, reach out to me to discuss details.)

    Do you shop on-line?  What’s the best deal you have ever found on-line?

    Ice Breaker – Mandatory Reading

    ICE BREAKER mandatory reading

    Reading is to the mind what exercise is to the body.

    Joseph Addison

    Each week on The Stretched Blog, I ask an ice breaker question. The questions are designed to help us get to know each other here in The Stretched Community. I’ll provide my answer to the question here in the post, and then you can leave your response in the comments. While you’re in the comments section, see how others answered the ice breaker question.

    (I’m always looking for Ice Breaker question ideas.  If you have an idea, send me an email at jon@jonstolpe.com.  If I use your question, I’ll give you credit and share your links.)

    Question:  If you could choose one book as a mandatory read for all high school students, which book would you choose?

    My Answer:  At first thought, I would say the Bible, but I’m not sure that would be effective.  Many of the books I HAD to read in high school tortured me.  And I don’t want the Bible to be seen in this way.  For this reason, I would select a book with short chapter and stories that kept readers attention.  If I could choose one book as a mandatory read for all high school students, I would choose Love Does: Discover a Secretly Incredible Life in an Ordinary World by Bob Goff.  I think Goff does a great job keeping the attention of readers.  His writing is easy to understand, and he motivates readers to do something worthwhile with their lives.

    To read my review of Love Does, click here.

    Also, I had the opportunity to hear Bob Goff speak earlier this year.  Click here to read my notes.

    Answer this week’s ice breaker question by leaving a comment. I look forward to reading your response! (As always, feel free to share links.) And keep Stretching!

    Ice Breaker – Summer Reading List

    summer reading list

    Each week on The Stretched Blog, I ask an ice breaker question. The questions are designed to help us get to know each other here in The Stretched Community. I’ll provide my answer to the question here in the post, and then you can leave your response in the comments. While you’re in the comments section, see how others answered the ice breaker question.

    (I’m always looking for Ice Breaker question ideas.  If you have an idea, send me an email at jon@jonstolpe.com.  If I use your question, I’ll give you credit and share your links.)

    Question:  What’s on your summer reading list?

    My Answer:  I reviewed two books this week – Talk Like TED and The Disciplined Leader.  I’m also reading Think and Grow Rich by Napolean Hill, The Art of Work: A Proven Path to Discovering What You Were Meant to Do by Jeff Goins, and Bleachers by John Grisham.  If the weather is decent tomorrow, I’m hoping to be on the beach reading a few pages in Ocean Grove, NJ.  (I have several other books on my nightstand or in my book pile that may get some attention as well as the summer moves along.)

    Answer this week’s ice breaker question by leaving a comment. I look forward to reading your response! (As always, feel free to share links.) And keep Stretching!

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