James Meehan - What's the Worst Advice You've Ever Received?
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James Meehan: Well, welcome to this week's episode of Culture Makers. My name is James Meehan, and this right here.
Ariana Lane: Hi, I'm Arianna.
James Meehan: Come on, yes! We are so glad to have you joining with us for a very special episode of Culture Makers where we're gonna be talking about all things, the Olympics, the worst advice we've ever been given, and that fateful question, what does Switch stand for? To start things off, Arianna, how was your week this past week?
Ariana Lane: It was so great. Just kind of a normal week, but it was super productive. It was awesome.
James Meehan: Come on.
Ariana Lane: What about yours?
James Meehan: Well, it was incredible. I got to celebrate two things. Number one, five-year anniversary to my wife, Mandy. Come on, somebody. And my first ever Father's Day.
Ariana Lane: Yes, that's right.
James Meehan: My son, who is now five months old, in honor of him turning five months, my wife and I's five-year anniversary, and our first official Father's Day together, my wife got me this wonderful gift that I am going
Ariana Lane: Oh what is it?
James Meehan: To show you right now in 3, 2, 1, kachow! Socks with my son's face on it. Can you do the zoom in thing? So yeah, so you can put anything you want on these custom socks, the official sponsor of this video, Divvy Up just kidding, they're not the official sponsor. Now moving on. Summer Olympics 2020 happening in 2021 because there was this thing that happened last year that caused the Olympics to get moved to this year. So, Arianna, are you a fan of the Olympics?
Ariana Lane: I am. I like summer Olympics way more than winter. Although winter is cool. It's just like, not my favorite. So I am really pumped. My favorite sport to watch in the summer Olympics is gymnastics.
James Meehan: Okay, why?
Ariana Lane: Yeah, because I used to do gymnastics. So I'm just like.
James Meehan: Oh, snap, okay.
Ariana Lane: This is so much harder than what I used to do. So it's just fun to admire their skill.
James Meehan: Did you have like a specialty? Were you like a balance beam, the bars, the beams?
Ariana Lane: Yeah, mine was beam. I still am like pretty, like my skill level for balance is pretty advanced. I will just brag on myself for a second. So, yeah, but I mean, it's just a fun sport.
James Meehan: That's fantastic.
Ariana Lane: Like it's just ridiculously hard.
James Meehan: Comment below if you wanna see Arianna take on a balance challenge. Let us know.
Ariana Lane: Please comment that.
James Meehan: So I remember when I was in the fourth grade in my PE class, we had like this, somebody like donated gymnastics equipment to our school. And so we got to do all this gymnastic stuff, and I remembered literally falling so hard that I got whiplash and had to stay home from school for a week, because I almost broke my spine.
Ariana Lane: That's actually a little sad, but why am I laughing?
James Meehan: Yeah, that's messed up.
Ariana Lane: Sorry.
James Meehan: So I agree. I think summer Olympics, way better than winter Olympics, because all of my favorite things to watch are summer Olympics, right?
Ariana Lane: What are your favorite?
James Meehan: So I love the gymnastics. I think men gymnast are some of the most incredible athletes on the planet. That's why you better believe my son Quattro gonna be a gymnast. He's gonna be doing the iron cross on the rings.
Ariana Lane: You should really let him choose that for himself though.
James Meehan: Oh yeah, no I will.
Ariana Lane: Okay, okay.
James Meehan: He will choose that 'cause it will be the only option. Just kidding, no I'm kidding, I'm kidding. But I also love watching Olympic weightlifting, the dudes that will literally snatch, which is from the floor over their head, 400 plus pounds in a single movement.
Ariana Lane: Oh my gosh.
James Meehan: It's incredible. The only reason I ever did CrossFit was so that I could have an excuse to try Olympic weightlifting. And that was the only part of CrossFit that I actually enjoyed.
Ariana Lane: Makes sense.
James Meehan: Yep, and then CrossFit was too expensive, so I quit. Okay, moving on. Summer Olympics are happening this year, 2021. And I believe I just looked at the countdown before we started filming. It's 30 days, a number of hours already forgot, and some minutes and seconds, but it's coming up really soon, and we're super excited for it. Next topic. Boom, boom, boom. You know, we've gotta talk about it. It's Culture Makers, and Marvel is continuing to do what they do, which is kill the game. Loki has had two episodes released. The next episode comes out tomorrow. And at this point I think Loki is going to be a strong contender for the best Marvel series yet. Arianna, your thoughts
Ariana Lane: Every time I come on Culture Makers, James or Vince wants to talk about a Marvel something, and it's not that I'm hating, I just don't know anything about it. So I have no thoughts.
James Meehan: Okay, I'm sure there are many of you that may not be as much of Marvel fanatics as Vince and I, and that's okay, and you're still welcome here. You don't have to love it, but man it's really good. Arianna, I've got a really important question to ask you. What is the worst advice that you have ever been given?
Ariana Lane: Ooh, that is kind of a fun question. I think the worst advice is something along the lines of just do whatever feels right or whatever makes you happy. Because to be honest,
James Meehan: Yes, Lord.
Ariana Lane: A lot of the time, that is not the wisest thing to do. Sometimes it is, sometimes I have, I'm giving myself good advice, but finding that wise counsel is just so key for me. So I really shouldn't be doing like just whatever feels good for every decision.
James Meehan: Come on, dude.
Ariana Lane: So what about you though?
James Meehan: That's so good. I think, when you say that advice, the thing that I think of is it really makes me happy to play video games. And so if I only did whatever makes me happy, I would never change my kid's diaper, because I would always be playing video games.
Ariana Lane: That's, yeah, that wouldn't work out well at all.
James Meehan: Yeah, that would be a recipe for disaster. I think the worst, when I read this, the thing that came straight to my mind was the advice of, just be yourself. Now this is like controversial advice. 'Cause it's like the most common advice that you will find anywhere and everywhere.
Ariana Lane: So true.
James Meehan: People telling you to be yourself. And the thing is is when I was like 12 to 17 years old, right, my middle school and high school years, I was a tool. And so for me to be myself would just to be more of a jerk that was selfish, that was inconsiderate, that was impatient. Like I was disrespectful. And so to be myself back then would have been terrible advice. Advice that I prefer way more is, hey, be who God made you to be, be the person that you were created to be, because who I was then is not at all who I am now. And I would much rather be me today than I was way back when, because me way back when would not at all, have been able to form a meaningful and healthy relationship with my wife, have a great relationship with my son. Literally when my wife and I first met, her first impression of me was, wow, this guy seems kind of cocky. And I, 100% thought that she was into me. And so I was spitting some game, I was making some moves, and every...
Ariana Lane: Trying to be smooth.
— Yeah, trying to be super smooth. Not smooth, more like slimy. And she kept shooting me down. And it led me to the realization that, wow, if I want to marry a girl like that, who loves Jesus, who is great with people, who is caring and considerate, then I probably need to work on me a little bit. And so that led me on this journey to figure out, okay, who is it that God's made me to be? And what are some things that I can do to be that kind of person? And that eventually led to the point where when Mandy and I started being more friends and hanging out together, we realized, oh, there's actually some chemistry here that didn't exist before. Because before, like I said, I was trying to be myself, and myself, not a great person. But I think that's the thing that is so interesting about that idea of just be yourself is that all of us have been created in the image of God. All of us have been created with dignity, with value, and with purpose. And oftentimes, the thing that is holding us back from stepping into that is this idea that who we are today is who we're actually meant to be. But I think that God has something better in store for all of us if we are willing to trust him, to follow him, and let go of some of our own selfish desires and assumptions.
— That's good.
— Pause for effect while I'm pulling up the next question. Okay, first question from you, one of our viewers. It's from Lara, she asked the question, "Any advice on how to spread the gospel"? Arianna, what advice do you have?
— Oh my gosh, I love that question. That is so good. This is one of those things that everybody who is following Jesus can do this in a different way, right? There's not like one way that you have to spread the gospel. I think for me personally, I love to get in relationship with others, see who God made them to be, kind of like what you were talking about earlier, and then that way I can kind of speak truth into them and slowly be Jesus to them, and just love them, and then eventually have the opportunity to share who Christ is and what he did for them. So that's like my favorite way
— That's so good.
— But I think everybody has their gifts that allow them to share the gospel in a little bit of a different way.
— That's so good. One of my favorite quotes of all time is from John Maxwell. He is probably in his 80s, and he's written like almost 100 different books on leadership and how to follow Jesus well, and one of the things he's famous for saying is that people don't care what you know until they know that you care. And I think this is the thing that you're speaking to so wisely is this idea that if I just go around and tell people about Jesus without actually showing them the love of Jesus, then people will not hear what we have to say. Our pastor, Craig Rochelle, has said many times that we live in a world today where people are sick and tired of hearing about the love of Jesus, and what they need is to actually see it, to actually feel it. And I think that's the challenge for us as Christians today is the reality that it's really easy for me to get on a camera and tell people about how much God loves them. But the real work of following Jesus comes in the middle of messy relationships, doing life with people, and showing them face to face the love that God has for them. And so I think that's probably, I know you said it's like not the only way, but I think it might be the best way, to be in relationship with people and share God's love in that way.
— I think it's maybe, like depending on your personality, it can look a little bit different,
— But it all comes down to loving others and showing them who God is.
— One of the things that I thought was really cool is I was serving this weekend and at our host team huddle, the host team coach was sharing about one of the things that they do every summer to invite people to church. Because that's one of the tools that we use to introduce people to Jesus is we invite them to church. And this gentleman was talking about how all over the summer, people would ask him, hey, like, what's your family doing for the summer? You guys got any fun plans? And what he loves to tell people is hey, yeah, absolutely. We've got some incredible plans. The month of July, at our church, we do something called at the movies. And it's one of the biggest things that we do, and it's an incredible way for our family to worship God together. And you should come check it out with us.
— That's so awesome.
— Right, and it's just such an easy way to invite people to church, because all of us, at some point are gonna get asked, hey, like doing anything fun for the summer? What's happening? What are you doing to stay busy? And I think for those of us who are followers of Jesus, who are a part of our church, Switch, and Life Church, we can easily use that to invite people to Life Church, Life Church Online, Switch Online, Switch here on YouTube, you can share this.
— There are so many things that we can invite to.
— With other people.
— It's perfect.
— Perfect. See that pause for effect? That's a new thing, I'm trying it out.
— You keep doing the pause for effect.
— Dude, I literally can't. But the second question comes from Natalie, which by the way, if you have questions, make sure you type them in the chat because we love to answer your questions and figure out how we can best serve and support you all throughout the summer, or the school year, all different things. But Natalie asked a really important question that I am very fond of answering. Natalie asked, What does Switch stand for? Now, the way that I always answer this is a joking way. I need clarify, because some of you think I'm serious when I say it, it's totally a joke, but I always say that Switch stands for Students With Intentions Towards Christ's Holiness. S w I T C H, not what it actually stands for, it's a joke, don't believe it. Really what Switch stands for is it's just kind of a cool name. But the reason that we like it is because when we make the decision to follow Jesus, we are switching from the ways of the world to the ways of God's kingdom. And for a lot of our students, they're switching from being kids to being about to step into the world of adulthood. And so there's this switch that has to take place in how we live, in how we love, and what we hope switch is, whether it's in real life, or online is a place where you can learn the lessons, and develop the wisdom, and the relationships to make that switch well.
— Yeah, that's great. I mean, I don't have like a joking way to say it, and then a real way. I think that sounds really great. Yeah, I think Switch is just so, so much about realizing who God made you to be and how you can take that into the world and shine your light for Jesus. So I love that.
— Mmm, come on. And also it happens to be the name of a video game console.
— It's also that.
— But we had the name way first, okay? Come on! Last question from our friend, Abigail. She wants to know, how do you help yourself stay focused on God.
— That can be so challenging, right?
— Come on, dude.
— I feel like you kind of figure it out, and then you step into a new school year, or a new season of your life, and you kind of feel distracted again. So I think it's something that is ongoing, you know, every single day when I wake up, I think about what I'm thinking about, which sounds kind of weird, but I recognize those distractions and those things in my life that are trying to take my focus away from the Lord. And then I'm able every day to say, okay, I'm gonna set those things aside and focus on Christ. There are times when I don't get that perfect. I think everybody can kind of identify with that, but it is just that renewing of my mind and just fixing my eyes on Jesus every day.
— That's so good. It's funny, 'cause I think like the shift from school year to summer has all of your routines kind of thrown out of whack.
— Oh my gosh, yes.
— And when your routines get thrown out of whack, I think that's a place where it's really easy to lose the discipline of spending time daily with God. Right, for me personally, I had this incredible discipline where every morning for a long time, I would spend time reading God's word, like reflecting on God's word, praying about what God is teaching me, praying for other people, and then just spending time quietly worshiping God. And that routine was so good and so valuable. And then I had a kid, and that changed everything. So I had to adapt this routine, because that priority of spending time with God didn't go away. The way that I did it had to change though, because of this new rhythm of life. And I think that's the thing for you where we're now, you know, like towards the end of June.
— Yeah, I can't believe that.
— Dates don't feel real in the summer. But we're towards the end of June, and for you, maybe you found yourself in a place where you've gotten out of the rhythm of spending time with God. And I think today would be a great day to shift back into that rhythm. And it might need to be something that looks different than the way that you used to do it. Now for me, I still try every morning to spend time reading God's word, reflecting on it, and praying. But there are some times, like this morning, where when I wake up, my kid is also awake. And so I'm like trying to read the Bible while also holding my son, who's like squirming in my arms, and so sometimes I'll read like three words, and I'll say, okay, I'll come back to that later. And I just try to find time later in the day to do that. So I don't know what that will look like for you, but I think one of the most important things to have with you along the way is other people that are following Jesus too. And this is why Switch exists is not just to bring you into a relationship with God, but to bring you into relationship with other believers, other followers of Christ, because none of us were meant to do life alone. And maybe you're watching this video and you realize that you don't have friends like that. Well, the good news is that all throughout the summer, Switch online is still happening five days a week, Thursday night, Sunday morning, Sunday night, Tuesday night, Wednesday night. So many opportunities for you to be a part of what's happening every week at Switch Online, to get connected to other students from around the world that are meeting on Zoom calls, FaceTimes, different things like that, so that even in the summer, when maybe you're not seeing your same friends as much as you used to, you can still be connected to life-giving relationships. And all that information is in the description of this video.
— Yeah, can I add one more thing?
— I just wanted to add that if you are one of those people who have found yourself out of that rhythm, something that I've really been learning lately is God is not mad at you for finding those times where you're out of rhythm.
— Come on.
— He doesn't love you any less because your quiet time has been off. Just come back to him because he loves you, and he just wants to spend time with you, and he wants you to know more of who he is. So just get back on track and be kind to yourself.
— Come on, somebody, come on! That right there, good advice. Some other advice we talked about, trash, but that, apply that right now. That's it, done talking, Culture Makers is over. Like, comment, subscribe, tell somebody about the things
— See ya.
— That you're supposed to tell them about. Summer Olympics are happening. Okay, bye.
— Oh my gosh.