morning window
I have been blessed to sit under many great teachers in my 10 years of walking with the Lord. In this digital age I have been impacted by many teachers that I would not have access to otherwise. I have noticed there are many resounding truths or a common foundation in these teachings over the years. Mainly, and most importantly, the truth that Jesus Christ was God in the form of man, perfect, holy, sinless, blameless. Christ died on the cross to take the punishment we deserve because we have personally sinned against God. Christ defeated death and He offers true life freely to all who repent and believe.


Another topic I have heard repeated over the years is the importance of spending time with the Lord. I feel the Lord has been telling me to reevaluate this spiritual discipline lately. The act of spending time with the Lord is referred to in many different terms in the American Christian culture. T.A.W.G., is the acronym the college ministry that I participated in used. This stands for “time alone with God”. I heard it referred to as “quite time” growing up and I have heard many other coined phrases along the way. These terms refer to the act of a believer setting aside a time to be still and be with the Lord. No matter the nickname, one thing I’ve noticed constantly encouraged by teachers and scripture is to carve out a specific time slot in your schedule. Get up early in the morning and seek the Lord.


Psalm 5:3 says, Listen to my voice in the morning, Lord. Each morning I bring my requests to you and wait expectantly. Another verse is Psalms 143:9, Let me hear of your unfailing love each morning, for I am trusting you. Show me where to walk, for I give myself to you.


I know we can spend time with Lord throughout the day no matter the hour. If we do not get up early it is not like we missed out on our all-access pass. I actually know a good amount of people that spend time with the Lord at night. The great thing is there is so much freedom. Our time with the Lord does not have to look any specific way and doesn’t require a specific time frame. Yet, since scripture repeats it and wise followers of Christ recommend it then I feel like it is worth considering.


Why rise early in the morning to meet the Lord? You are rested and refreshed in the a.m. There are less distractions and demands in comparison to the rest of the day. Spending this time with the Lord starts your day of like adding fuel to a fire that needs to last for many hours. Reminding our forgetful brains of our purpose in the morning will set us up for success. And my favorite, His mercies are renewed every morning!! I literally said to myself this morning before I got up, thank the Lord it’s a new day. It is so great to be reminded that our previous failures from the day before are gone!!


Now it is a struggle for many people to get up and spend time with the Lord. I know it is for me. Yet, I do believe the effort will far outweigh the struggle so it is at least worth a try!!


May we be faithful in the small things so that we can be entrusted with far greater things! 


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The church dynamic is constantly changing.  There was a time when you would never see a cell phone out during worship service.  Can you remember the embarrassment seen on the face of the member whose cell phone went off during service at the start of altar call?  Today, members bring their cell phones in place of a bible.  It is a lot easier to find the book, chapter and exact verse you are looking for with that handy little app.  What if the cell phone could replace your checkbook?  mobileAxept makes this a possibility by allowing members to process donations of any amount via text messages.  Below are some examples of how mobileAxept can benefit your church.



Ways mobileAxept Benefits Your Church:

-          When mobileAxept is used to its full potential, churches experience an increase in revenue.

-          mobileAxept’s record keeping ability allows you to easily capture donor information – name, address, cell phone, amount and purpose.

-          mobileAxept is integrated with Shelby v5 and Arena making importing gifts virtually painless.

-          mobileAxept uses keywords that are associated with specific purposes in Contributions. You can text “mission 100” to donate $100 directly to the mission trip fundraising account.

-          mobileAxept was inspired by a pastor who noticed that church-goers carry cash less frequently than in the past. Think about it; when running out the door to make it to church on time it’s more likely that you might forget your wallet before you forget to grab your cell phone. Consider this, based on the Pew Internet Project research, 90% of all American adults have a cell phone and 81% of cell phone owners use their cell phone to send or receive text messages.

-          mobileAxept makes giving easy and convenient.  Members can give whenever, wherever and how much they choose.


Never again will you miss the opportunity to help your church as long as you have your cell with you. Studies and surveys show that the easier it is to give, the more frequently we do it!



New Pricing for the life of the client

One Time Set-Up Fee: $100 for all new clients

Monthly Maintenance Fee:  $50 / month for all new clients

Transaction Fees: 2.75% + $0.25 / per transaction


Tourist on holiday using mobile cell phone

Ever wish you had a stronger phone signal? It is frustrating when you try to send texts and for some reason they are not able to be delivered. So, you try to send the text again, to no avail. There is an new product that has been designed to improve your wireless network. It is actually a “do-it-yourself” wireless network.  Bloomberg reports that this hand held antenna, known as a GoTenna allows phones to communicate when networks are down “via public, unlicensed airwaves.”


The GoTenna allows communication by way of text message and GPS location. In an emergency, these two tools are of great importance. It was actually an emergency that inspired GoTenna’s creation. Creator Daniela Perdomo came up with the idea for this product after the damage of super storm Sandy made communication impossible. This product does not support phone calls at this time but who knows what the next model will include.

Photo Credit: Moomettes via Compfight cc



How similar are songs between pop idol Katy Perry and American Christian hip hop artist FLAME? When It comes to content I’d say they couldn’t be more different; however there has been a connection made between these two artists recently. FLAME’s song, ‘Joyful Noise’, and Perry’s hit, ‘Dark Horse’, are similar in rhythm/beat and therefore a lawsuit has developed regarding copyright infringement.


On top of copyright there is also the issue of possible negative reputation occurring due to their combating subjects. Perry’s 2014 hit, ‘Dark Horse’, is about a man falling in love with a witch. FLAME’s song, ‘Joyful Noise’, declares that the Lord lives forever therefore make a joyful noise. Two topics could not be more different; yet the average ear can pick up on the similarities in rhythm/beat.


Only the Lord knows how this one will turn out. With a lawsuit like this one it feels like it’s the world versus Christians. People quickly pick a side and back their stance with strong opinions. The reason being, nothing gets people fired up more than threatening their gods. Katy Perry is worshiped by many people in this world for her beauty, talent and riches. Yet there is only one true God and He does not need anyone to defend Him. He will not share His throne with another. He is extremely gracious to all, even to those who denounce Him. (The wages of sin is death. [Romans 6:23] Therefore the fact that we are alive for a time on this earth is an act of grace.) Scenarios like this should serve as a reminder of the spiritual battle that is at hand.  


I feel we should pray for FLAME during this time. Pray that FLAME would seek the Lord and represent Christ well. Pray that he would patiently wait on the Lord for guidance and that he would be obedient to the Spirit.  Pray that the Lord would be exalted and honored through this matter. Pray God would change many hearts along the way so that they would know the true life given only through Jesus. The Lord changing hearts is a reason to make a joyful noise indeed!! 

Photo Credit: marfis75 via Compfight cc


Athletes defy odds and they seem to have supernatural abilities. They represent our cities and countries so that the average human feels like we are connected  to them and therefore part of the game.


It is safe to say many people worship sports and idolize athletes. What do athletes worship? We could make some guesses but here is one story we do know. Tim Howard, the goalie for the U.S. national team at this year’s 2014 World Cup worships Jesus Christ.


As millions watch Howard live out his dream it is encouraging to hear him quote that his peace in life does not come from his accomplishments or performance but rather from Jesus Christ. Sound crazy? He understands that it might sound that way. He says this peace, that has been given to him, surpasses all understanding. To me, that means this peace is so great it doesn’t make sense or can’t be explained by mere human logic. Read this article to learn how Tim Howard came to know about this incomprehensible peace.


Were you able to attend International Shelby Conference this year in St. Louis, MO? Take a moment and enjoy some of the highlights of this incredible experience. Watch the exciting Mandisa video that kicked off the event. Listen to an abbreviated version of Anne Marie Miller’s keynote address. Join the attendees for an awesome time of worship and praise led by Big Daddy Weave. Take a peek into the Arena.Core conference which was a part of ISC for the first time this year. Hear what the attendees had to say, and then make sure you watch the end of the video to discover who will be the keynote speaker for ISC 2015 in San Antonio, TX next year!

Shelby Podcast: ISC 2014 Highlights from Shelby Systems Media on Vimeo.


Are you planning on joining us in San Antonio next year for ISC 2015? We sure hope you will!! As you know, we get pretty excited about ISC here at Shelby Systems. Some folks around here have already been doing research about our upcoming ISC location. Don Alsup, from our Media Production Department, has had his eye out for interesting media and he has stumbled upon a book that will have the average to extreme history buff packing their boots and planning on meeting us in Texas.


When you think tourist attractions in San Antonio your mind probably ventures to The Alamo. The story of The Battle of The Alamo didn’t take place strictly at the Alamo itself but at multiple sites all over downtown San Antonio area. Author, Dean Kirkpatrick, searched for a book that would not only educate on these battle sites but also identify each site as well. He never found such book, so he created one himself called “The Alamo Story and Battleground Tour”. Here is an interview with the author from Texas Country Reporter. This will give you a glimpse of a few of the amenities that San Antonio has to offer when you meet us there next June.

Does anyone have any other San Antonio hot spots they would recommend? Please leave a comment below.


internet med
Culture today is very different from culture thirty years ago. More change has occurred in culture between generation z and their parents, generation x, than any other parent/children culture comparison in the U.S. This change is largely due to technology. Technology exposes and grants an access to the world that has never been available before. Everyone can have a voice and share their point of view without limit. This voice can be spoken in cyber space without the consequences that would occur during a face to face confrontation. Opinions are mass produced and range all over the spectrum from empty encouragement to harsh criticism. This amounts to a whole lot of words and a lack of relationships.


This video from Catalyst looks at Jesus’ life in scripture and discusses online etiquette based upon the way Jesus shared opinions and lived out relationships. It definitely hits some interesting points and it will help you stop and reflect on your online presence as a believer. 



We all have safe practices we follow when going out and about in our daily routines and in places that aren’t safest, like stores, parking lots and garages, malls and crowded venues.  As part of our normal routines, we lock the doors and set the security systems on our vehicles and residences.  We make sure our keys, cash, credit cards, check books and wallets are secured.  We hold our children’s hands when crossing the street and walking in parking lots or crowded places and we remind them not to talk to, go anywhere with or take anything from strangers.  We generally try to free ourselves from distractions so we can remain alert and focused on our surroundings.

                So, how do we behave differently when we are in a place that we consider “safe” (places like the workplace, school, daycare, church or a community center)?  Do we assume the volunteers and employees at these places are automatically good eggs because of their association with these “safe” places?  Or do we make sure that these safe places have policies in place to ensure all employees are screened and any volunteer who works with children, youth, vulnerable adults, money, keys, or drives the organizations’ vehicles should be screened?

                Here are some interesting points that may help you decide what type of safety and security policies you want to implement:

-          7% of annual revenue is lost due to theft.

-          75% of employees steal from work and most do so repeatedly.

-          More than 90% of juvenile abuse victims know their abuser in some way.

-          More than four children die every day as a result of child abuse.

-          No group is immune to being a victim of abuse or theft.  These violations occur at all socioeconomic levels, across ethnic and cultural lines, within all religions and at all levels of education.

-          You can take steps to reduce the risk of this occurring within your ministries and organizations.

One of the greatest tools we have for eliminating and reducing these numbers and creating safer “safe” places is knowledge.  Our partnership with SecureSearch, a leading provider of Background checks, provides you with the tools needed to equip your ministries and organizations with this knowledge.  SecureSearch offers an extensive list of background services and have partnered with SafeGuard from Abuse to provide child abuse awareness and safety training.  For more information on the services they offer, click here or contact your Sales Rep.

                If you have found some safety practices that work well for your organization or ministry, please feel free to share them below.


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We had over 500 attendees this year at ISC 2014 in St. Louis, MO. It was truly an encouraging event; Anne Marie Miller spoke of renewal and her message resonated in many hearts. Big Daddy Weave lead us in worship and helped us grasp the Lord’s ability to redeem all that is broken. Many impromptu networking session took place during this year’s conference; attendees met together to share ideas and solutions.


St. Louis was a gracious host; the Gateway Arch and Cardinals baseball at the Busch Stadium were just the beginning of great experience!! And when it was all said and done our hearts were encouraged and our spirits revived. Organizations headed home with new skills and information that will benefit their ministries. We pray that the impact will not stop there but reach to the ends of the earth for the glory of the Lord.


Special thanks to everyone who made this event happen and to the customers that allow us to keep doing what we love!! Check out our ISC 2014 Photo Album. See ya’ll next year at ISC 2015 in San Antonio, TX

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