How Much Do You Love The Journey?

How much do you love this journey, and change it to love it more if you are yearning for the tipping point – Gary Vaynerchuk.

Do you love it enough to change…

your schedule

your work habits

your fears

your relationships

your mission

your wants

your price

your hopes

your sleep

your life

How much is the tipping point worth to you?

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Fasting During Lent Doesn’t Have To Suck, If You Do It Right

Fasting is not fun, and it si not supposed to be. There. I said t. But it doesn’t have to suck either. Fasting is a wonderful spiritual practice,  but, let’s be honest. there’s no fun in giving up what you most enjoy. On top of that, if you fast the wrong way, it makes the experience even more terrible. A double whammy, if you will.

In today’s video I share about how to have the best experience doing your fast that will ultimately lead to joy, even if it’s not fun.


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What If You Knew You Only Had 24 Hours To Live?

Maybe you’ve thought about this. I didn’t, until I looked at the short life spans of animals. I was inspired to do this by Seth Godin’s post How Long is Now?

Animals don’t know how long they were created to exist. We humans have some idea, barring disease or accidents, humans can live, on average (as of 2013)

U.S. expectancy in 2011 was 78.7 years, which is slightly below the OECD average of 80.1. For U.S. men, the average life expectancy is 76, while it’s 81 for U.S. women. (At five years, this gap in life expectancy between men and women is smaller than the OECD average of six years). – Huffpost 

We also know about life span because we can tell time and measure age. We’ve seen people die at ripe old ages. We know about how far we can go.

80 years or so is a good bit of time, but we are so disrespectful of the time we are given.

We say things like.

I”ll get to it tomorrow.

Someday I’m gonna…

I’ll get around to it.

We need to show more respect for time and the goals which we want to achieve in the time we are given. Let’s break down our goals in animal time.

Pretend you are one of these animals and the number next to you is your average life span. What if these animals knew how long they would live? What goals would you set knowing you only had that amount of  time?

Rabbit Goals,  8-12 years

Guinea Pigs,  4 years

Mosquitofish, 2 years

Chameleon,  1 year

Dragon Fly, 4 months

Houseflies, 4 weeks

Drone Ants, 3 weeks

Gastrotrichs, 3 Days

Mayflies, 24 hours

We are all given the same amount of time,. Whether we use it, invest it or waste it will determine if we achieve our goals in life. Above all, we should at least respect the time we have.




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The Real Killer Is Not 2016

If you’ve been on social media lately, it seems 2016 is a really bad guy. I say he, but it could be a her, or maybe it’s an alien and I should call it an it. Either way, 2016 has been a villain for many, but not me.

Am I sad thar we lost so many icons and stars? Sure, I want everyone to live forever and die comfortably in their sleep exhaling rainbows like a Snapchat filter, but that’s not the reality we live in.

Great talents who died in 2016 include

Prince, Muhammad Ali, Carrie Fischer, David Bowie, Nancy Reagan and  even Abe Vigoda who people were saying had died in years past. All talented people. All beloved by us who grew up with them and who watched and listened to them display their art. The big question is, who will take their place?

Over 187 talented people from every walk of life passed from this life including sports, politics, music, medicine, movies, and television. We mourn their loss because they will not be around to bless us with what God had blessed them with. They made their mark in the world and we applauded them for it and they deserved it.

187 talented people sounds like a lot, but when you compare it to the amount of dreams and goals that were killed by excuses this year, it sounds small. The next Prince, the next Bowie, the next ____________ (fill in the blank) hasn’t stepped up yet to make their mark because of a host of excuses like “I could never play guitar like Prince” or  “I could never act like Carrie Fischer”, well you’re not supposed to, you’re supposed to become the next great you!

But that will not happen if you keep making excuses why you cannot do whatever it is that you have been gifted to do. The world is waiting and you’re next in line. Step up.


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Don’t Bet On The Future

For those who do not follow me on Instagram, I have been leaving one minute messages about excuses and overcoming them. I got up on December 12th and said to myself, “I want to change my morning routine.” That day I went and bought some sweat pants and set my clock for 5:30 the next morning.

I walked for about an hour, covering a little over 2 miles. Not a stellar day but I was not setting out to run a marathon, I just wanted to change my routine. I also did not wait until January 1 to make this commitment because Jan 1 is a big, fat lie.

Making a commitment on January 1 will not guarantee that you keep that commitment and neither will any other day. That is why on December 13th I got up, changed my morning routine, and went walking. Two weeks later, I am still at it.

While I walked, I go the idea to share some thoughts on Instagram. Below is the video where I talk about betting against the future.


Stop betting against the future.

A video posted by Paul Turner (@thedproject) on


The bottom line is, we cannot control or forecast the future. The future is unpredictable, but although we cannot foresee or predict the future we can prepare for it no matter what tomorrow brings.

Walking 3-5 miles a day does not secure me any more time in the future, but it does prepare me for a day, if I should live that long, for a time when I’d like not to weigh so much and have an active lifestyle when I am older.

I believe in not betting on a fickle future, because the future always wins against an unprepared soul.

Scripture tells me that the future is unstable ground when it comes to making big boasts,

Come now, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business, and make a profit.” You do not even know what will happen tomorrow! What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes.… James 4:13,14

This does not mean we should not set goals or make plans, it means we must hold them loosely and prepare for whatever future may show up at our door.

I know who holds the future and He is greater, and more stable, than what the future may bring me. My bet is on Him.

Tell me, are you betting on the future? Why or why not?


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January 1st Is A Big, Fat Lie

And you bought it hook, line and sinker. I understand why people wait until the beginning of the year before making new commitments but New Years Day is not a date, it’s a mindset. The minute you choose to make a commitment, the calendar flips to New Years Day. January 1, the calendar date, is quite alluring, but if it’s such a great day to make a commitment, why do the vast amount of commitments made on that day fail so miserably 30 or 1 day later?  January 1 is a lie.

Our brains tricks us into thinking things will be different, a new  year, a fresh slate, but why are we unwilling to start today? If this commitment is so important we should get right on that, right? Here’s the real problem, we carry our excuses from last year into the new year.

If we do not butcher our excuses and eat them to dinner, nothing will change. January 1st is, in and of itself, and excuse, a way to prolong any commitment need to make right now.

I recently started walking in the mornings. I had made no plans to start walking as a new commitment in my life, but I had had enough of the excuses of why I was not walking. On this day when I heard

“Its too cold”

“It’s so warm here”

“You don’t want to do this”

I declared war on my Excuses and punched those Excuses in the mouth.

I just wanted to walk, get healthy, and maybe lose a few pounds, that was the extent of my goal. No hoopla, no announcement or fan fair;  I just got up and did it. I’m eight days in and up to about 9o minutes of walking at about 5 miles per walk.

Today is New Years Day, if you want it to be, or not.

In the comments, let me know: What excuses did you use this year that you need to kill off?

Is your dream big enough?

A video posted by Paul Turner (@thedproject) on


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Repeat After Me

I want to affirm you before you walk into your next youth meeting. Why? Because so many of us go into our youth meetings with such a lack of confidence in ourselves and in God. Many of us stand before our students feeling ill-equipped to help them; but it doesn’t have to be that way.

Read this before your next service and then walk into your meeting room with full faith and assurance that God goes with you, therefore, you cannot fail.

Tonight I meet not with students, but with friends, fellow believers of the cross

They are not my enemy. They are my flock.

I am as prepared as I can be.

I have come to this gathering to love God by loving the students He’s given me.

I love them because He first loved me.

I have not come to perform, beg, or bribe kids into a decision.

I have come to share, proclaim, discuss, and show the love God.

This will draw them to Him.

From the pulpit and during ping pong; I will love those I have charge over.

I cannot fail tonight because LOVE never fails.

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Why Is It So Hard To Breakthrough?


The answer is simpler than you think, it’s mindset.

Why can’t we breakthrough the numbers barrier in our youth ministry? It’s because of what we believe about


our abilities

our resources

about God

about our youth group

If we had a different mindset we’d believe differently, act differently and then we’d breakthrough.



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4 Thing You Should Be Thankful For In Youth Ministry

It’s a time to be thankful, and if you are a Youth Pastor, you should get on your knees and thank God for these four things.

That there is such as thing called Youth Ministry

Youth Ministry has changed and morphed over the years. Youth Ministry goes as far back as the early 1900’s with Christian Endeavor where kids took ownership of there ministry and endeavored to live a Christian life. fast forward to the 40’s where Youth For Christ (YFC) was have huge rallies to introduce teens to Christ and in the 50’s pivoted more to a club format. It was the in the 70’s with the post Jesus Movement of the 60’s and other factor, where the church started to hire youth pastors to reach and disciple teenagers.

We are the benefactors of a long history of youth ministry. Sure, if we did not have the professionalization of youth ministry we would still be ministering to youth in some way or fashion, but we should always be thankful that youth ministry has morphed into a valuable role in the church.

That God would call us to minister to this group

I am thankful that God loves young people. I see this in scripture when God heard Hagar’s cry in Genesis 21:16-18. God heard the cry of a mother and child and God responded. I was 17 years old when I felt God called me to youth ministry.

I had great youth pastors and camp counselors in my life who showed me what it meant to love young people. It was the Blue Like Jazz Effect. I saw how much they loved ministering to me and other teens and it resonated with me. The final call came when I was debating what I wanted to do after high school My choices were social work, professional bowler (I had a 143 average at 14) and youth pastor. Tough choices, right?

It was that year a missionary from Africa came and spoke at our church. At the end of the service there was a prayer line and I went up for prayer. The missionary prayed for me and I started to walk aways when he called me back. He said, “Have you felt a calling to ministry?” God nailed me and confirmed my calling and 26 years later, here I am and I am so thankful that God called me to minister to young people. Let’s be thankful for the call of God.

That there was a church who was willing to take a chance on us.

I took my first position at 22 years old. I wasn’t the sharpest tool in the shed but I had passion. I had worked at six churches over the years and I am thankful to each one of them for taking a chance one me. I was not too thankful for getting fired from two of them, but I am still thankful they too a chance on me.

I take chances now on young pastors in my community who seek my advice. These young men are hot messes who’re working out what kind of leaders they want to be, but I would not trade the opportunity because someone took a chance on me and poured into my life. Let’s be thankful, maybe even send a card, to those who took a chance on hiring us or putting us in a leadership position.

For students who would bother to show up

Close your eyes and see your youth group in front of you. How many of them are made to come to midweek and how many choose to come? Now, look at the those kids who choose to come. Why do they come? They could be anywhere, home, at a friends, etc. but they are here with you. Some come because they sense your love for them. Some because they are looking for God. No matter why they’re at youth, they are, there with you, and they come every week.

We should be thankful for every kid, church kids and fringe kids because who they are now is not who they will be and who they will be could involve us. What a privilege. What a joy. Maybe we should all take time to verbally thank God for every kid in our groups because they do not have to be there.

Side Note: I am thankful for all of you. You read my stuff, some of you buy my stuff, and many of you share my stuff. Thanks for hanging with me in my ups and downs and being a part of this blog, a community where I can share my thoughts. God bless you, your family and ministry this Thanksgiving.

Question: What are you thankful for about your youth ministry? Let me know at

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