Farewell to Blogging on JustinsRefuge.com

It has been a wonderful three years blogging at JustinsRefuge.com.  I have shared some of my deepest thoughts, and God given ideas and vision.  There were many times where I felt the need to retreat from ministry, and this blog provided that refuge.  It is a bitter sweet time, where I turn the page from the past, and look to the future of what God is going to do in my life.

That is why I have launched JustinWilliams.org

Be sure to check it out, and subscribe for all the latest articles.  Thanks for the continued support and encouragement.

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WordPress Themes that Bloggers Appreciate

I currently am in the process of trying out some new themes for my blog.  The one I was using was generic, and highly used.  (not necessarily a bad thing, just not what I am looking for.)  This got me to thinking about the things I really appreciate about a good WordPress/blog/website theme or template.  Here is a brief list of things to consider when designing your next theme or template.  I’m no expert in this area but here goes:

Bloggers want themes that are

  1. highly customizable: custom headers, backgrounds
  2. Optional Layouts
  3. user friendly
  4. clean, yet crisp
  5. Multiple Drop down menu bars
  6. Customizable Header Text: color, font, alignment, location, etc.
  7. No unnecessary boxes
  8. More page templates within a theme
  9. Menu/page header bars that are highly visible.
  10. and a Featured Content option is always a plus.

Once again these are just a few of my personal preferences that I believe most bloggers appreciate.

Consider putting some of these ideas into your next creation.

New Look for Social Networking!!

I finally found a blog wordpress theme that I really like Greyzed by Forge web creations, and I have to say that I don’t plan on changing it anytime soon. 

I guess the one thing that you can learn from this, is to continue to be creative no matter what resources are at your disposal.  creativity cost $0.  I don’t have the ability, resources, or budget to do a lot with web design, but anyone can accomplish what I’ve done here on wordpress.  I highly encourage all pastors/ministers to get a blog, and start sharring.

Slowest Day on the Internet

I finally decided to break away from family events to set behind the ol’ PC, and do a little blogging and surfing.  I had to get away.  All the social interacting was getting to me.  When I got on here I discovered that for the first time I felt alone on the net.  It didn’t seem like anyone was out there.  There were a couple people twittering, but other than that there were no new incoming blogs, no new emails, and no new newsletters.  It was kind of peaceful, and to my amazement refreshing; knowing that people were off their computers for a change spending time with people.  Many people will waste their lives away sitting behind a monitor.  Christmas is a day where people can step back into reality and the way life is suppose to be.  We should spend more time with family, give to those in need, and provide services to those less fortunate.  My hope and New Years resolution is to carry over this mind frame into the New Year.  Won’t you join me on this life changing challenge?  Have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.  May the Lord be with you.

Out with the Old and In with the New

I was really getting tired of the look of my old blog, and I felt it looked very …. I don’t know …. I guess blah is a way to describe it.  It looked to blocky and disoriented.  I needed something new, and something that flowed.  I don’t know if the new look is it or not, but I like it better.  It looks professional.  Hahahaha, I know what your thinking Justin, professional.  I can at least try all right.  🙂 

While redesigning my blog I got to thinking that if we would spend as much time rearranging our lives so that they might be more Christlike as we do trying to look and be professional we would grow closer to God.

I don’t know where I’m going with this, but it just seems like we waste a lot of time on things that don’t furthur the Kingdom of God.  I guess it is just one of those heart check moments.  Anyways just “keep your heart fixed on Jesus and your mind centered on God’s Word,” (W.A. Criswell) and you should be alright.

Blogging Can Be Rewarding

The title says it all.  I never thought blogging could be so rewarding.  It is a simple task that just takes a few minutes a day or a week to do.  The great part about it is you don’t even have to do it online.  Get you a notebook, and keep a personal blog (journal).  As I read old post that I have written it just brings back memories.  That is one of the things that I have neglected the most in my life, my memories.  With my blog it highlights my life and thoughts.  I think every person in ministry should have one.  The greatest thing about it for pastors is that it allows them to connect with their congregation in ways they could never do on a daily basis.  You can start at any age, and in any profession.  You say “I don’t know what to write”, that is the great thing about it you don’t have to.  Just write your thoughts, ideas, and feelings. (Be considerate, because others will read it.)  If you can’t think of anything to start with; then write that.  

Example:

“This is my first post, and I don’t have a clue what I am doing.  I decided to do this because some hyped up youth pastor convinced me to start a blog.  I think it is a stupid idea, but I guess I will see what comes of it. I don’t even know what I am supposed to write, but here goes.  It is cold outside today, however it is beautiful.  God is shining his light down upon us, and embracing us with His Spirit.  I haven’t been sleeping much here lately, all I find myself thinking about is how am I going to be able to send my daughter off to college.  I decided that it was best to start setting $10 a week aside for it.  My wife Betty is doing well and she baked the best tasting apple pie the other day.  The church Deacon John Smith called today, and I shared with him an Idea I came up with.  What if we made a Christmas card box with the alphabetized slots for each family to drop cards in to save on postage?   Etc…………………………..”

You get the picture.  Don’t hesitate, do it.  I promise you will enjoy it, and will be glad you did.