Yvon Prehn, what’s important to me and my viewpoint for writing this blog
A writer and a teacher for Jesus—that is how I describe myself. As a writer, I have very strong opinions about many things and feel compelled to express them. As a follower of Jesus I want to make my writing reflect the viewpoint of his Word, the Bible.
This focus on the Bible comes from the core of who I am. One of my earliest memories was of my Grandma Erb reading the Bible to me; I loved Sunday School and Vacation Bible School. In college, the Navigators (a Bible-based discipleship ministry) was the center of my life. I started teaching the kindergarten-age children in Sunday School when I was in third grade and never quit teaching. Professionally, I’ve taught high school, college, and was a national seminar presenter.
After working with many international Christian organizations in communications I started a ministry to train and equip church communicators. I’ve written hundreds of articles, some books, created websites, videos, and taught up to 90 seminars a year, on all aspects of church communications to thousands of church communicators for fourteen years as I over North America.
In of fall 2009, after many years of traveling and teaching, I realized I could not create the resources I knew were needed and continue to travel the way I did, so I traded the friendly skies for a cozy little office that looks out on a banana tree and a little side yard filled with plants that grow year round here in S. California (having spent many years in Colorado, flowers in the winter a still a miracle to me). Since then I’ve created an equipping and training site for church communicators www.effectivechurchcom.com. In addition to work on that and other websites and blogs, I’m also updating and writing books, plus creating CDs and other forms of media on church communications.
I live in Ventura, California with my husband Paul, a bi-vocational pastor.
My north star
I believe the Bible is the foundation, the canon (in the sense of a rule or guide) for my comments on this site and for all the work we do as church communicators. If we are followers of Jesus, I believe we should live with the Bible as our guide and with our eyes on Jesus and his coming kingdom. I believe we are eternal people and that our best life is not now. I believe that this present life is to be one of single-minded service in how we can serve God and others. My thoughts on how those beliefs can be lived out specifically in church communications and sometimes in related areas of current events and culture is what this blog is about.
Just because I use the Bible as my point of reference for this blog, it would be foolish pride on my part to claim correctness on every (or even many) of the views I express. Though I have studied the Bible seriously for many years, have a master’s degree in church history, have attended seminary and have taught children, youth, and adult Bible classes much of my life, I am humbly aware of how much I have to learn.
Every Bible teacher I’ve studied seems to have blind spots and I’m sure I do also. I’ve often said that we all have them to keep our pride in check. Not a one of us is a perfect commentator on God’s Word, but perhaps as many of us enter into public conversation about it, we can refine our personal understanding and help our world see Jesus more clearly.
My other site, www.effectivechurchcom.com has the how-tos skills, nuts and bolts to equip and encourage church communicators to create communications in print and digitally that will help their churches fully fulfill the Great Commission. This site is separate from the training side of my ministry. On this site I share opinions, challenges, rants and raves about not only church communication, but how we ought to live as church communicators and as Christians. I decided to make this separate, so that my opinions don’t interfere with objective training in communication skills and strategy. With my other site, there are clearly right and wrong ways to use typography and do a clean clear layout or create a church connection card that works.
On this site, it’s all my opinion and if you hate that, it’s perfectly OK. Just do what I tell you to with typography.
Opinions abound, usefulness varies
In my past seminars and through the emails I’m sent, people have often ask me, “Yvon, do you have an opinion on…..” all sorts of topics.
I always answer, “I have opinions on everything. That doesn’t mean they are correct, but I trust they are informed.”
Three verses are my inspiration for my opinions here:
Endure hardship with us like a good soldier of Christ Jesus. No one serving as a soldier gets involved in civilian affairs—he wants to please his commanding officer. (2 Timothy 2:3,4)
The path of the righteous is like the first gleam of dawn,
shining ever brighter till the full light of day. Prov. 4:18
The lion has roared—
who will not fear?
The Sovereign LORD has spoken—
who can but prophesy? (Amos 3:8)
The Living Bible translates the last of Amos 3: 8 as “The Sovereign Lord has spoken—so who can refuse to proclaim his message?”
Proclaiming his message, through rants, raves, comments, and meditations, his message, applied to church communications, current events, and culture is what I pray this blog is about.