Saturday, December 27, 2008
As the new year is approaching, some of us have started to think about New Year's resolutions and possibly making some changes. Our pastor at Northwoods Community Church talked about making "real change" in our lives in the coming year and so much of his advice paralleled what we have tried to impress on Cache' Connections members. How many of us give up the resolutions after about Week 3? When we don't see immediate results from our efforts, we often give up due to an incorrect mindset, possibly believing that because the desired change has not occurred, it must not have been God's will. Pastor Cal explained that it doesn't mean the desired results aren't God's will - it often means you haven't positioned yourself for God's will to happen. The scripture reference was 2 Chronicles 7:14: "if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land." What if we would adopt a new mentality this year that says, "It's not my job to change myself so much as it's my job to position myself before God in such a way that He can change me." God may be waiting for YOU to make a new positioning move. Those moves might include humbling yourself before God, expressing dependency through prayer, developing a more intimate relationship with Him or becoming more obedient to following God's will in every circumstance. God's word tells us in John 15:7 "If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be given you." So, in making our New Year's resolution, we should first focus on our relationship (or position) with Christ and move when he says to move and then wait for him to work in amazing and wonderful ways! Our prayer is that God's abundant favor will bless you with an incredible New Year.... make a move or two to make it happen!
Saturday, December 20, 2008
Is anyone as stunned as we are to see that 2008 is nearly over? We thought we'd take a look back and review what God has done in and through Cache' Connections.
Early 2008 we were still using our original website, which was more of a personalized
matchmaking system. However, behind the scenes we were working on our business plan and with the web contractors as they were custom-building the site that you now see. This change came after we received some national attention after an article was published in the Peoria Journal Star in the Fall of 2007. This article hit some national news lines and we started getting calls and emails from around the world, stating what a much-needed service this is for Christian singles. We knew that we needed to restructure to be able to 1) be more affordable and 2) handle many more members.
We are so thankful for the many advisers along the way: legal, financial, marketing,
relationship and business experts that God placed in our path to share their knowledge with us. The snowy weather we are now experiencing is almost too reminiscent of our trek to New York City in February 2008 to make a pitch to investors. Talk about an adventure bathed in prayer!
Our new website launched on 5/20/08 in Rockford, Illinois with the generous help of Salem Communications, WQFL and radio DJ Johnny V, who was our Single of the Month. The Single Spotlight Contest ran for three months and was a lot of fun. However, we felt that God was closing the door on that particular strategy.
As we worked with different Christian radio stations, we soon found out that radio alone was not enough to reach our target audience. It seemed that everywhere we went, we were told to "call the churches." So, brave and mighty warriors that we are, that is what we did. We began by inviting some Peoria-area pastors to a round table discussion to address how Cache' Connections can come together with the Church to fill the gap for Christian singles. It seemed that overall the pastors were pleasantly surprised and delighted that we came to them for wisdom, guidance and partnership.
We are finding that many pastors and churches are willing to help promote Cache' Connections' services and events to their singles population. There seems to be a general consensus that singles are an under-served segment of the Church. Many pastors are somewhat relieved to have a dating service that they can now recommend. We have spoken to several church leaders about the possibility of coming together to host a singles event. We had our first Cache' Connections Live! event in Naperville on 11/14/08. With the help of WMBI and Calvary Church, we had over 400 singles in attendance! We are now booking events for next year, beginning in
Peoria (Richwoods Christian) on 1/30/09, followed by Orland Park (Parkview Christian) on 2/13/09. We have been invited to participate in a singles event that The Chapel is hosting on 4/3/09, and Calvary Church has invited us back on 4/24/09. Discussions are underway with a large church in Northwest Indiana for a possible event in March. We are working our way around the general Chicago area and will expand from there as the Lord allows.
Large events are one thing; small, intimate gatherings may be more your style. Our first Cache' Quick Introductions (speed dating) event was on 12/2/08. We had a wonderful group of people who enjoyed meeting several other committed Christians within their age group. Our New Year's Eve party will be another great opportunity to spend time getting to know other Christian singles - members and non-members. Stay tuned for more connection parties to come!
We must not forget the connections! Just today a new member told me he was quite pleased with the quality of our members, compared to one of our competitors. We have heard of many members who are connecting over the messaging system, telephone, coffee and dinner. We are very excited to see our dreams become a reality after so much hard work and sacrifice. Please let us know if you have met someone special through Cache' Connections, and we will pray for you.
Friends, we count it a privilege and pleasure to work with you in this area that is so dear to your heart. Together, let's look forward to great things in store for 2009!
Romans 15:13 May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.
Monday, December 8, 2008
Okay ... can we talk? About talking? At Cache' Connections, we seem to have a little confusion about who is supposed to begin communication. Our Questionnaire asks both parties if they feel men should be deliberate in initiating relationships, and the majority of males and females indicate "yes." So, men, once you have your Pending connections sorted into Preferred or Not Interested, please send at least a short message to those who spark your interest! FYI, there is no function associated with your sorting. In other words, the ladies do not know that you have sorted them into Preferred or Not Interested. We also urge the women to introduce themselves by sending a short note to the men - no harm there - and he will probably appreciate that you took notice. Guys, if you have received a message but are not interested, please don't leave her hanging, but send a polite note indicating that you don't feel this is a viable connection. Nine times out of ten, she will be glad to know one way or the other. (The same goes for the ladies in replying to the men.) Next, after you have begun communications through the messaging system, we urge you to take your communication to the next level as soon as both parties feel comfortable. Cache' Connections does not promote long-term "e-dating." If you are going to have a relationship, it's going to be live and in person, so the sooner you talk on the phone, then meet in person, the better off you will be. Cache' Connections suggests that all relationships begin on a friendship level, free of pressure. Pray along the way ... as we pray for connections in process ... and we will see what God has in store! Lastly, why not invite your connections to join you in the open chats? As a reminder, there are chats every evening beginning at 7:30 p.m. CST except Wednesdays. Here's how to access The Meeting Room: go to: www.cacheconnections.com; click on: Community and Advice; click on: The Meeting Room; enter your username and the password: cachebox
Saturday, December 6, 2008
Our first Cache' Quick Introductions was held on 11/14/08 at Carrabba's Italian Grill in Naperville. A lot of members expressed that they felt a little out of their comfort zone in participating in "speed dating," but were pleasantly surprised to find that they thoroughly enjoyed meeting so many quality Christian singles in "one stop." We began the evening with instruction and a word of prayer, asking God for his presence and peace for all of us. We stressed that this should be a low-pressure atmosphere in that we are looking at the beginning of a friendship.
After each session, participants gathered together for continued fellowship over a buffet dinner which included salads, breads, pizza, pasta and chicken.
All mutual connections were issued, along with contact information, with 24 to 36 hours. It is now up to the participants to connect further over email, telephone or coffee.
Here are some comments from those who attended:
"As mentioned before, I really enjoyed the event with Cache Connections. The brief introductions were quick but not rushed at all. Those I met with showed acts of faith and kindness and only you see when God calls you into relationship. It's a new beginning and I see that Cache Connections members are moving in the right direction with a Christ-Centered focus in this fellowship of believers seeking new Journeys in life with possibilities. It restored my hopes and prayers." (Steven)
"Thank you for organizing the quick connections dinner last night. I think it turned to be very successful, and the food was great too!" (Enza)
"I just wanted to thank you for a fun time at the meet and greet tonight. The restaurant was tasty and there was a nice mix of people. I was going out of my comfort zone when I signed up for this activity. But I ended up staying late talking to a few people. (guys and gals) We closed the place down!!
God bless the work that you're doing and sincerely thank you.Grace lived out." (April)
Sunday, November 23, 2008
Friday, November 21, 2008
So, I thought I'd blog about the golden rule, for no particular reason. I first heard of this rule, "do unto others as you would have them do unto you" as an impressionable 2nd or 3rd grader in a public school. I remember the principal pointing it out to a few of us after she had posted it in the typical block letters on a bulletin board in a main hallway. You know those things in life that really strike you and you think, huh, that makes sense and I really like that. Imagine my delight when some 28 or so years later I learned that these were Jesus' words! (Luke 6:31) The Bible and Jesus are so practical. A quick Google search has taught me a new way to say it: (ahem) "ethic of reciprocity." Apparently it transcends most religions. I'm okay with that. So I'm throwing it out there: do we treat others the way we want to be treated? Do we show genuine respect for persons of other color, people who don't look like us, act like us, worship like us? What about the gas station and store clerks, dance instructors, and those who have alternative lifestyles? Jesus loves them just as much as he loves us. We don't have to agree or even like everyone, but we are commanded to treat everyone with respect.
Saturday, November 15, 2008
Cache' Connections Live! was a huge success last night, all thanks and praise to God! We had prayed that we would pack the house, and that is exactly what happened. Walk-ins abounded! God is so good.
Some special notes:
1) WMBI Moody Broadcasting was there taking sound bites from singles; the event will be featured all week on their station
2) At the last minute, a TV producer was able to attend and tape the evening's events
3) Everyone enjoyed Michelle Strombeck's poignant speech on singlehood and the need for community; Michael Olson's casual and fun style of leading us in worship; hearing some snippets about Cache' Connections (and apparently some of my stage antics :) ; meeting and greeting many other singles in their area; having their photo taken for their profile; fabulous door prizes; opportunities to sign up for group studies based on The Singlehood Phenomenon; coffee and snacks; registering for speed dating
4) Was that a news reporter I saw?
5) Many people said they would spread the word back to their churches and ask them to host another singles event
We learned a few things that need to be done differently, but no problem was too big and they were all " good problems to have"!
Kim and I thank our friends for their prayers. God wants to do something for his beloved ones who are not married. It is exciting to be working within His will for His people, and we look forward to new surprises in the very near future!
We want to thank our partners and sponsors: WMBI Radio, Calvary Church, Michael Olson, Jenn B Designs, LA Fitness, Merle Norman, Meier Clinics, Janessa Bullen Photography
p.s. We would appreciate your sharing photos of the event with us as we were too busy answering questions to take any of our own :)
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
Have you heard the expression,"if at first you don't succeed, try and try again?" Benjamin Franklin said, "Diligence is the mother of good luck." Joyce Meyers states, "But it's more than luck, isn't it? It's about having a determined attitude that says, I will do this forever if that is what I need to do. I will not quit. I will not give up. I am determined." We've heard so many singles tell us that they are giving up. Understandably, we all want to do what comes natural when we are hurt or disappointed - we want to retreat or escape the pain. Proverbs 10:4 says the diligent man will bear rule and will be rich. Linda and I have had to repeat scripture regarding diligence and perseverance many times in building Cache' Connections - when certain situations have seemed impossible or hopeless. We have reminded each other to take our eyes off the circumstances and turn our thoughts towards God's word and His promises. It is a difficult task to control your thoughts which control your attitude, but we have found when we do this, things have always worked out in one way or another. We want to encourage you to set your mind, focus on God's word when the going gets tough and persevere to the goal!
Sunday, November 9, 2008
Joyce Meyer's book, I Dare You, really drives home the philosophy of living life with passion. We are devoting the next few blogs to this topic as taking responsibility for our lives in the area of self-discipline and obedience to God's word are the starting point, but it doesn't end there. What if we could actually live our lives with passion - I'm not talking about just the sexual kind - I'm talking about living everyday with full-blown, living out loud surrender....taking risks, loving completely and forgetting what lies in the past. What if we awoke everyday and proclaimed..."Here I am God, send me!" And then, what if we step out of that box that the world has duped us into believing we fit into. Taking responsibility for how we live is a brave thing. It takes courage to accept life as it comes to us and it also takes courage to be determined to make the most we can out of it. God tells us in John 10:10 that He has come to give us life that we may enjoy it and "have it in abundance." If we were honest with ourselves, we would all agree that we have an innate desire deep inside each of us to reach for goals that seem unreachable. We all need something to strive for, to work toward, and to dream about. We need a reason to get out of bed in the morning and one that is greater than merely existing for another day. Maybe it's time to start living life boldly, seeking God's will and trusting Him in all circumstances. Tired of making excuses because of your fears? Only a few of us step out of our safety zones and ever dare to follow our hearts. Will you dare to be different? Will you dare to live life like you mean it?
Friday, November 7, 2008
Today I'm sharing from my devotional book by Joyce Meyer: new day, new you. James 1:22: "Be doers of the word, not hearers only."
"One of the biggest problems in society today is that people don't want to take responsibility for their lives. They want quick fixes. Society has trained them to believe that if they have problems, somebody else is responsible. Their parents are responsible. Their spouses are responsible. Their schools or employers are responsible. The company that made the cigarettes or vehicle or junk food is responsible.
I'm not saying you are responsible for the current state of your life. Lots of uncontrollable events occur in our lives. Sometimes we do get very bad messages in childhood. Sometimes we have bad people in our lives who hurt us. The situation you find yourself in may or may not be your fault. But it is your fault if you take it lying down! You do not have to stay in that bad situation. You get to make a choice. And that choice is 100 percent yours.
No matter how you got to where you find yourself today, don't let it be an excuse to stay there. I had many excuses and reasons for my poor health, bad attitude, and unbalanced life. As long as I offered excuses, I never made progress.
The time has come to be very honest with yourself and with God. When you have a moment of privacy, take a deep breath, clear your head, and repeat this phrase: 'I am responsible for my own life. No one can take charge of it but me. If I am unhappy or unhealthy, I know I have the power to change that. I have all the help and knowledge I need; and with God's hand today, I start becoming the person of excellence I have always known I could be.'"
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
Why aren't singles getting married? Reason No. 10: Concern that marriage will fail. No surprise here, considering the divorce statistics. Interestingly, however, there is a trend toward a more optimistic view of marriage among younger singles - Generation Y. Author Pamela Paul calls this "matrimania" and feels these younger singles are marrying in response to observing their Generation X friends and relatives growing older without getting married. Research from 1997 shows that 9 out of 10 twenty-somethings said that a happy marriage is part of their ideal life, ranking higher than career in most cases. Unfortunately, many of these earlier marriages are ending in divorce, and have been termed as "starter marriages." Yikes! Of course, "trial marriages" or cohabitation has been pervasive in our culture for the past 20 years or so. However, 4 decades of research have revealed that couples who choose cohabitation typically experience a higher divorce rate, have less financial stability, less faithfulness and are less happy than those who choose lawful marriage. Sadly, some parents of Generation Y'ers are encouraging cohabitation as a result of their own painful divorces. However, God tells us in his word that "Marriage is honorable among all, and the bed undefiled; but fornicators and adulterers God will judge." Hebrews 13:4. There is a plethora of help available to couples considering engagement, including books, tapes, counseling, personality inventories, relationship skill development, etc. I will leave you with Drs. Rodgers' bit of profound wisdom: "Marriage is not luck, it is skill!"
Sunday, October 19, 2008
Why aren't singles getting married? Reason No. 9: An Unbalanced Focus on Career. Many women are finding themselves entering their 40's still single and childless, yet very successful and fulfilled in their careers. The trouble is they are doing such a good job at their jobs that they have little room for anything else. Likewise, examples are given of men who are so involved in their careers and ministry that they don't feel there is room to add a wife and family. In taking a deeper look into their lives, however, it is often found that there are doubts and fears that are driving them so far away from seeking a godly relationship. As in so many aspects of life, a healthy balance is key. Three single counseling patients were found to have the following reasons for having an unhealthy focus on careers: 1) their careers were something they could control. 2) they were more successful at their careers than they were at love (they put their energy into areas where they did well in order to feel good about themselves). 3) their careers were something they could count on to reward them (there are no guarantees in the business of love) There is an interesting report of one client who was heavily involved in ministry and had a tendency "puff himself up" to such a level that it was a turnoff for woman. So, what about you? Are you using your career to compensate for loneliness or to hide your painful feelings of past hurts?
Wednesday, October 15, 2008
Not Dealing with Prior Heartbreak.
There is an insightful quote regarding the pain of a break-up by Mark McMinn in his book, "Psychology, Theology, and Spirituality in Christian Counseling": "Discomfort often motivates insight, and when we use clinical tricks to erase misery prematurely from our clients' lives, we short-circuit their opportunities for emotional and spiritual growth. Throughout Scripture and throughout the history of the Christian Church, God has used pain to bring people to maturity." Yet how many singles try to short-circuit the pain of a break-up by forming rebound relationships - relationships that are a forum for unresolved grief to be expressed in bitterness, resentment and unforgiveness. Chapter 8 gives some solid advice on dating after a break up, including "intentional dating." Read how "feeling is healing," despite our society's reluctance to express grief. Follow Bill and Stacy's journey of their rebound relationship that started our very rocky and how they found help to identify their reactivity and change their patterns, beginning with forgiveness.
Tuesday, October 14, 2008
Why aren't singles getting married? Reason No. 7: Wanting the perfect mate. Could you be a perfectionist dater? Always finding something wrong with the person you are dating? Waiting for bells, whistles, rainbows, stars and stripes? While some level of attraction and chemistry is necessary for love to flourish, society has force-fed us with very unrealistic notions of romance and sex. In Chapter 7, love is defined, as well as what it is not. There are some very interesting pieces about the science of attraction, and how this is God's design for healthy offspring. Huh, imagine that! Read about the chemicals in your brain and the science behind infatuation and that feeling of euphoria or the natural high experienced with new love. What a clever God we serve! Read also about the specific time frame when these wear off and love suddenly becomes ... well, a little bit more like our parents (if they are still married.) We learn that love is a conscious choice, almost a daily decision that frankly isn't always easy. So, how about you? Are you always looking for that irresistible attraction? Perhaps you need to take another look. Sometimes true love comes in the form of a spiritual nudge - kinda like that still, small voice that we know is the Holy Spirit. (Footnote: for those too young to recognize the photo, check out the 1979 movie "10": http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0078721/)
Sunday, October 12, 2008
Why aren't singles getting married? Reason No. 6: Fear of getting hurt. Many singles have been through a painful breakup or divorce, leaving deep scars and fears that either consciously or unconsciously prevent them from taking risks on future relationships. 39-year old Patti had worked hard to lead a righteous life and maintain her purity, only to find herself to be the last one standing among her not-so-righteous friends who found husbands. She lamented, "If I have to attend one more wedding of a girl in my church group who I know did not live according to Scripture, I'll scream!" (How many of you can relate to THAT?) The sense of unfairness of it all caused Patti to stop socializing, but instead poured herself into her work and children's ministry. She adopted the all-too-common attitude that if God wants her to have a mate, he will just have to make it happen. I chuckle that the authors write that "God is not a genie," when referring to those who bank on his omnipotence and don't feel that have to take any measures to make something happen. The fact is in most cases that fear has paralyzed singles so that they are unconsciously sending out "no dating" vibes. As you read this chapter, your eyes will be opened to the power of fear and how it presents itself in the form of negative messages from the enemy, control issues and even pride. Drs. Rodgers helped Patti to confront her fears and put feet to her faith, which allowed her to find the desire of her heart. :)
Friday, October 10, 2008
Why aren't singles getting married? Reason No. 5. A poor understanding of the purpose of marriage. Although most singles will state that they would like to find a soulmate and enter into marriage, they also participate in a lot of joking, sarcasm and negativity about marriage. With a divorce rate over 50% and all of the profound fallout thereof, it's no wonder that singles are fearful of entering into marriage. Those whose parents are divorced are unable to trust their partners for the security of their future marriages. Our independent culture, where everyone is out for themselves and it is much easier to be self-sufficient than in the days of yesteryear, adds to the dilemma. However, we know that we were built for community because we are commanded to love one another. It is one of the main ways we learn to give up our self-centered natures. Our culture needs an overhaul of our view of marriage, and it begins with God's word - his design for community at the most personal level, and that is within God's strategic design for marriage. This chapter deals specifically with reasons why men tend to avoid marriage, even though it was ADAM who originally longed for relationship.
Wednesday, October 8, 2008
Why aren't singles getting married? Reason No. 4: Confusion About the Rules. Society seems to have such a casual attitude about dating, as opposed to the ritual of "calling" of our grandparents and great grandparents' era. Women aren't sure who is supposed to take the lead, who is supposed to pay, and how does a best-friendship advance to taking more serious steps, involving accountability and intentional dating? Since the 1950's, social trends such as "hanging out," recreational and group dating, and the sexual revolution have caused confusion for both men and women. It was no shock for me to read in this chapter that women want men to take the lead and want to be pursued; we frequently hear this from our female members at Cache' Connections. The doctors write: "Men were designed by God to be the leaders, but they have stepped back. Women, in their impatience, have stepped up." This aggression from the women adds to the confusion for the men. In this chapter,Drs. Rodgers spell out what they have titled "terms of intentional dating," which is a balanced cross between the marriage-focused days of courtship and the casual, recreational dating of today. Read all about them, along with some real-life stories of couples who have experienced these issues and addressed them head-on with the help of professional counseling.
Tuesday, October 7, 2008
Why aren't singles getting married? Reason No. 3: Unresolved issues from the past. It is typical that people resist looking at the past to see how it has affected them. However, your past can have a huge impact on your present, especially when it comes to relationships. This chapter goes rather in depth of on the topic of soul wounds and the six stages of social development. If you were wounded as a child (and the authors claim that we all have soul wounds), this will greatly affect the type of mate you will attract, as well as how you respond in relationship conflicts. Lots of good stuff in this chapter, too much to give detail here! Get the book!
Monday, October 6, 2008
Sunday, October 5, 2008
Cache' Connections is partnering with Drs. Tom and Bev Rodgers, along with several churches, to address issues discussed in the doctors' book, The Singlehood Phenomenon. The book lists the top 10 reasons why singles are avoiding marriage, so I thought I'd address these in my forthcoming blogs. Here we go:
Reason No. 1
Skepticism about Love and Marriage.
The number of singles in the U.S. is on the rise - about 50% of the adult population is single. This is the oldest and largest singles population ever recorded in history. The main reasons for singles' skepticism include the high divorce rate, relational insecurity, fear of getting hurt, and our narcissistic culture. We are reminded, however, that our desire for a mate is God-given. In Genesis 2, we see that God was pleased with all of Creation, except for the fact that Adam was alone. Adam desired companionship and intimacy; in fact, all humans are hardwired for love. So don't feel guilty or ashamed about your desire for a mate. Instead, let's take a look at what might be holding you back from seeking and finding your soulmate.
Monday, September 22, 2008
Friday, September 19, 2008
Tuesday, September 16, 2008
So I started a book titled "Lessons I learned in the Dark" last night by Jennifer Rothschild. I must admit I wasn't too excited about starting it, but needed a break from the computer and TV. It's the story of how Jennifer lost her sight in high school and how that has affected her faith and life. I'm in her grip already at page 28 as she explains the terror of leaving the safety of home and going off to college completely alone and in the dark. Although she was went through mobility training, she had such fears as: who's gonna check my makeup for me? (I can identify!) Who's gonna tell me what food is on my plate? How will I really know if there are no car coming when I'm crossing the street? My question would have been: how will I know where to go and where the doors and sidewalks are ... I can't imagine. Jennifer heard her heavenly Father tell her: "You must take a step. I've prepared you to go, and deep down you want to walk by faith." She goes on to say, "When we do step out, like the heroes of the faith in Hebrews 11, we'll find the treasures that God has reserved for those who lean completely on Him." Within two weeks, Jennifer stumbled upon the wonderful man who became her husband. So, I'm just wondering - what steps of faith might you need to be making? It is evident from the Old Testament to the New Testament that God will work within our faith and action. If you are already a member of Cache' Connections, you have taken that first step and we applaud that. What else might God be waiting for you to do? Are you interacting with your connections? Are you open to the type of mate that God might have for you, or is your check list too long and stringent? We have seen and heard over and over again success stories that begin something like this: "I would have NEVER ..." We urge you to be open and willing to take the next steps and prayerfully ask the Lord to help keep your heart and mind open for what He wants to do to fulfill your longing for a soul mate. ~ Linda
Monday, September 8, 2008
At our church, Northwoods Community Church, we had a visiting worship pastor candidate lead the worship. It was awesome! He seemed to put together a package (sorry, kinda worldly sounding) including videos, specials and worship songs for all of us to enjoy. It was evident that he had many of us pumped up for God. I find it interesting that different individuals enjoy different styles of worship. Last week I visited a friend's church to support their child's dedication to God. The worship was much more traditional and included a lot of organ music. I am thankful that God enjoys all styles of worship! It is true that worship is more than music, though we seem to put the emphasis on that. Worship is partly your attitude toward God and others throughout your day. You worship God when you give your all at work or school. When you work to be the best "you" you can be, that is worship. Is that awesome or what? Romans 12:1 "Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God's mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God - this is your spiritual act of worship. Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind..." In other words, it's not about you, it's about our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen!
Monday, September 1, 2008
Wednesday, August 13, 2008
Monday, August 4, 2008
Now is a great time to "get out of the boat" and give Cache' Connections a try. For a limited time, sign up for 6 months and get 50% off of your subscription - that's a $49.97 value!
Let's face it, forming relationships takes time. This will give you an opportunity to build your profile and start communicating with your connections.
As Summer comes to an end, this a great time to begin thinking about developing new relationships. Your special someone could be just a click away!
PROMO CODE: AUG0806. This offer expires on August 31, 2008.
Kim and Linda
Wednesday, July 30, 2008
So everyone is always wants to know if we have any success stories. Although we are too young to be able to boast weddings and babies, we proudly boast that we are aware of three couples who are feeling a strong connection toward one another to the point of deactivating their accounts. What a confirmation that what we have built is working! We'll be posting official success-so-far stories on the site, but two couples met through the matching and messaging system, and one actually met in the chat room! So take heart, all you who hope in the Lord, Cache' Connections' mission statement is being fulfilled! Our mission statement:
1. Providing a connection point for Christian singles for community and matchmaking services
2. Supporting and promoting healthy dating relationships based on biblical standards
If there are any other unreported success stories out there, remember, we don't want your name, we want your information!
Friday, July 25, 2008
The Christian Compass
July 24, 2008
Cache Connections has Plenty of Cache' for Christian Singles
Posted on July 24th, 2008 by Sharon
by Linda Emmons
Since our society has long abandoned formal, “proper” introductions of unmarried people to one another, and most frown on arranged marriages, what is a Christian single person to do? Being a Christian single has it’s benefits, and some people are called to that lifestyle. But if you or someone you know is part of the majority of Believers, those who know God has a soul-mate “out there” for them somewhere, and hate the sterile, ineffective approaches of typical dating services, Cache Connections may be for you.
Cache' Connections is the outgrowth of the matchmaking abilities of friends and business partners Kim Whitaker and Linda Martin. Believing that a faith-based, personal approach to finding a mate was lacking, the two women started a matchmaking service. Soon it became apparent that they needed a larger pool of singles and decided to take Cache' Connections online in February, 2007.
Kim and Linda said “We built the service exclusively for Christians… It has always been crucial that we are lifting up in prayer our clients and all areas of the business and committing every aspect to be done in a God-pleasing manner. We believe God hard-wires in everyone a destiny to be completed here on earth, so we take this role very seriously.”
A cache is a hidden treasure, and some of the unique characteristics of Cache' Connections are the personalized, interactive services intended to bring out the treasure in the people they serve. Cache' tries to help members understand themselves and develop healthy relationships. Kim and Linda host online chats to stay in touch with members and provide support from Drs. Tom and Beverly Rodgers, relationship therapists, international speakers and authors of multiple books on Christian relationships.
Cache' adds interest by hosting live chats and a “dating game” segment where a single is spotlighted and they narrow choices down to finalists.
To get started, prospective members must agree to a statement of faith, provide a credit card, and answer a questionnaire. The members are given a series of choices to describe their faith and how it plays out in their daily lives. The questions are designed to be a teaching tool, guiding members to think about who they are and what they are looking for in a mate. The next task to register is photo submission. Since other sites tempt members to use outdated photos, Cache' members are required to submit photos reflecting a more present reality.
Cache' Connections is unabashedly Christian, and scriptural context is provided on their site for all the activities. Check them out further at http://www.cacheconnections.com/
Founders: Kim Whitaker and Linda Martin
Current members are from 20-80 years old; Average member age range is 35-48 years old
Geographical area covered is worldwide, although being a new service, many are clustered in Cache’s home base of Illinois.
Monday, July 21, 2008
Though quite hot and sticky for everyone, we were so blessed to participate in IgniteChicago's second annual all-day music festival. Sponsored by Compassion, Edan Concerts and Sonshine Concerts, we enjoyed worship by Jael, John Reuben, Red, Todd Agnew, Superchick, Hawk Nelson, David Crowder, Mercy Me and Newsboys. What an awesome experience to come together with so many other Christians to bring praises to our Lord Jesus Christ.
Ignite, held in Schaumburg, was attended by over 7,000 people. What a great opportunity for Cache' Connections to spread the news of our services. Booth visitors got a kick out of voting for our Single Spotlight Contest; even the kids and "marrieds" got to participate and play matchmaker-for-a-day. (If you haven't registered your vote, check out this page: http://www.cacheconnections.com/matthewfinal).
From 11:00 a.m. until about 9:00 p.m., Kim and Linda were busy explaining Cache' Connections services and answering many questions from interested Christian singles. In addition, many good contacts were made, including some radio stations, singles groups, and other ministries. We look forward to seeing the fruits of this opportunity for Cache' Connections, and especially for our members!
Tuesday, July 15, 2008
Scary, I know. So, you know those annoying "forward" emails that your friends, relatives and coworkers send you? How they often seem to be hokey, repetitive, sacchirin sweet or too edgy or foul to share? Well, I received one of those yesterday. Of course, it was from one of my e-friends who never writes fresh text, always a forward. Snore...... until I clicked the link about Laminin! Have you seen this on youtube? Ohmygosh, click on the link below to watch Louie Giglio explain to you what Laminin is. Colossians 1:17 says: He (Christ) is before all things and IN HIM ALL THINGS HOLD TOGETHER.” One way Christ does is this by the cell adhesion protein molecule called Laminin, diagram above. OK, so, since I'm not a preacher and definitely not a scientist, please click on the link. You'll be glad you did.
Saturday, July 12, 2008
So, the other night I was chatting away with my new member/pals in our chat room. Everyone started introducing their faithful dogs and cats at their side. I mentioned Obie, pictured above. I don't think my new friends took me seriously when I stated that we are not sure if he is 100% dog, so I felt compelled to blog about him. There seems to be a strong hint of rat, thus the nickname: "Streetrat," affectionately taken from the Disney movie Aladdin. My son found him roaming the streets on the other side of town and the rest, as they say, is history. To my further surprise (and chagrin) he later brought home a purebred black lab puppy named Jack - paid in full. Jack is 1 year old and a full time job. So all you out there with cute little beagles and lapdogs, think of me. Pray for me. The picture tells it all. Maybe we will have an "Ugliest Dog in the Spotlight" contest next...
Tuesday, July 8, 2008
While we encourage everyone to take their relationships slowly and prayerfully, we also encourage you to begin speaking with each other over the phone or meeting in person as soon as you are comfortable in doing so. So much can be lost over the internet - tone of voice, body language, humor, etc. Let's face it. If you are going to have a relationship, it's going to be "live and in person." So, when you're ready, go ahead and call! We have put together some great conversation starters:
"Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone." Colossians 4:6
Wednesday, July 2, 2008
Hi everyone! Just a short entry to ask you to pray for us as we continue to pray for all members and potential members. We pray daily for your connections, and that God would direct single Christians to Cache' Connections who would be good connections for you. We also ask you to pray for us, as we make decisions on how to expand our marketing. We have received God's favor with WQFL in Rockford and are very thankful for that! We realize that most singles want to be connected with people who are relatively close to them. Finding the right Christian radio, email campaigns and web drivers can be very complicated and time-consuming, but we know God has a plan for us... and you. Plans to prosper and not to harm us! We claim God's promises over this business and for your heart's desires. Have a blessed 4th as you remember to thank God for the freedoms we enjoy in the United States of America. ~~ Linda
Tuesday, June 24, 2008
Sunday, June 15, 2008
We have had a great response from the area and also have received signups from several other states. It is exciting for Linda and me that several people are communicating and arranging to talk or meet. Members seem to be adjusting to our photo requirements in order to help combat the common online dating delimna of falsifying photos. Most of all, it is such a confirmation that Cache' Connections is attracting the people it is designed to attract: like-minded believers.
Our online chats have just begun. We had our first open chats and engaging conversations were experienced by all who attended. Very soon we will soon be featuring our experts in our chats who will offer their expertise to attendees.
Linda and I continue to refine our marketing model as we experiment in this test market. We were featured in the Rockford Star, which has brought awareness to some who do not listen to WQFL. We also are interviewed on WQFL each week.
Above all, we pledge our faith in God's ultimate plan and destiny for this business and its members.
Monday, May 26, 2008
I'm reading a great book on dating by Dr. Henry Cloud. Chapter 23 introduces a gal who is having issues with her boyfriend of one year. It seems she often takes second place to his hobbies and other interests. (Haven't we all been there?) Dr. Cloud asked her what she was looking for in a mate. She responded with a respectable "I want someone who is committed to me, is spiritually compatible, lives out our values, stuff like that." Dr. Cloud suggested she break off the relationship, but she responded that she loves him. Interestingly, Dr. Cloud showed her that she was being led by her attachment to him, rather than leading by her values. He states: "You have to be guided by your spiritual values and the things that make love last. I am not suggesting you 'throw love away.' I am suggesting that you protect love and require the character that makes it work. That is what values do - they protect and preserve love and all the good things in life." Dr. Cloud goes on to suggest that you maintain your boundaries from Day 1 of a relationship in order to protect your emotions from getting over involved with the wrong person. I think this is an all-too common problem, and the cause of many divorces. People settle for someone who doesn't really meet their basic value system. This is overlooked at the beginning of a relationship due to exaggerated chemical reactions sometimes referred to as the "love cocktail." Over time, this love potion wears off and you are left to deal with a person that you don't mesh with on a fundamental level. This is not to say that there won't be some give and take in a relationship. You have to carefully weigh what you can wiggle on and what you can't - there are no perfect relationships. Just don't settle for someone who may turn you into someone you don't want to become, or for a relationship that is less than God's good plans for you!
Wednesday, May 14, 2008
Seven days til launch and so much to do. We are working fervently to load content into the site and learn how to manage it. We are so excited to welcome singles in and let them start connecting!
On Monday we were interviewed on WQFL radio in Rockford. You may click on the link above to stream their program. They have totally embraced Cache' and are running interviews, 15 second commercials and have added our logo to their website. The exciting part, though, is that their single DJ, "Johnny V", is going to be our first spotlighted single in our contest! He is going to be talking on the air about his experiences with Cache'. So, girls, line up and be ready to apply to be his special date, which will be paid for by sponsors in the Rockford area.
On a side note, for you Peoria-area friends, we regret to say that WCIC has chosen not to continue our spot. There are no hard feelings and we will continue enjoying their programming, but wanted you to know why you won't be hearing about Cache' on your local Christian radio station.
We thank all of you who have faithfully prayed for us over the past several months. It has been a gigantic endeavor, but God has been with us all along, teaching, correcting and stretching us in many ways. To God be the glory!
Wednesday, April 30, 2008
We are busy writing content as we are less than 30 days from launch. Here's a preview of the matching process.
- Cache’ Connections matchmaking system was developed around these two foundational concepts:
- 1. When it comes to matters of the heart and soul, science can only go so far in
measuring compatibility and the all-important element of chemistry. Despite the emphasis on scientific matching systems in today’s dating society, it is highly unlikely that a successful connection will be based solely on science. Matching systems offer a great advantage by providing information to determine common interests and compatibility, but cannot absolutely determine whether there will be a connection between two individuals. 2. The decision to form a relationship will ultimately come down to two individuals making that choice for themselves by connecting, communicating and spending time together in a variety of circumstances.
- The Cache’ Connections system is designed to help Christian singles connect and establish healthy relationships by:
- 1. narrowing all members to like-minded believers 2. providing a detailed questionnaire 3. providing encouragement and guidance based on Biblical standards
- The questionnaire is a self-discovery process in itself. The questions are designed to help singles come to a deeper level of understanding about themselves and what qualities they desire in a potential connection. Cache’ Connection members are given relationship advice along the way by Drs. Tom and Beverly Rodgers. This professional advice will guide members to look at themselves in a more subjective manner and possibly prompt them to
reassess what type of mate they are looking for.
- Cache’ Connections is designed to form a community of committed believers, match members according to zip code and age and then educate members in order to make healthy choices for themselves. We encourage members to read and follow the advice from our experts and prayerfully seek God’s direction in their relationships.
Tuesday, April 22, 2008
(Isn't that the title to a country song?) Single Christians, you are not alone, despite how you may sometimes feel. God’s word is full of hope, love and encouragement. As you wait and pray for the mate God has for you, we strongly urge you to get involved in the life that God has for you now. Read, study and reflect on God’s word each day. What is he showing you – today? How is he stretching you? What new ministries may he be asking you to be involved in?
Psalm 37: 4 – 6
"Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart. Commit your way to the Lord; trust in him and he will do this: He will make your righteousness shine like the dawn, the justice of your cause like the noonday sun."
Saturday, April 19, 2008
I think I can speak for the majority of people in the Midwest when I say: Hallelujah, Spring has arrived! There is nothing quite like it: the grass greening (and some kind of unspoken grass wars among men); perennials peeping; walkers walking again; rain...well, raining. A wise old mentor once told me, "Every season has its beauty." Well, I suppose so. I am thankful for the changing seasons, but most thankful for this one! Spring is a reminder that God is a God of hope. How about you? Are you hopeful for new things? A new love? What might you need to be sprucing up? Why don't you consider a makeover? A new hair cut or style? An exercise program? It's a great time of year to grab a friend and commit to a walking or jogging plan. Though we all want to be loved for our inner selves, tending to our outer selves sends a message that we want to be the best we can be... for ourselves, our loved ones, and those we may want to attract :)
Friday, April 18, 2008
- Single Bachelor/Bachelorette Candidate of the Month
- Submissions of possible "Connections" are made
- Choices are narrowed down to 3 by Candidate
- The possible "connections" are shown on the website and discussed on the radio
- An online "dating game" is held that the public can view or access at a later time
- The public votes on their choice of "connection" for the Candidate
- Candidate chooses whether to go with public vote or his/her own choice
- Couple goes on a date provided by area sponsors.
- Follow-up interviews are available on the Cache' Connections website
We are in the process of seeking Candidates in the Chicago, Rockford and Peoria,IL area at this time. Required age range 20 and up. Submissions of interested candidates can be sent to email@example.com. Submissions must provide age, email address, city, state, photo and phone number. Happy hunting!
Fair question, Right? Easy answer? Absolutely not. Have you read "Undressed" by Jason Illian? We love his fresh approach to dating as a Christian. He has a keen eye on the so-called taboo's and the worldly trends and has some great ideas on how to balance them. Please read it in its entirety. He ends it with this: "You'll know it's love when it is not a pink elephant, we-are-the-world, kumbaya feeling, but rather a calloused-hand, damaged heart, dreams-meet-reality passion. Real love will help untie things that are knotted up inside and tie things that are dangling loose. Most important, you'll know it's love when you see God in her eyes. When you feel completely undressed and completely covered at the same time.... then it is love. May we all be so blessed as to find it." This is Cache's prayer for you, too.
Sunday, April 13, 2008
I stumbled across this quote while going through some notes from a Maximum Impact leadership conference I attended a few years ago. Is it hilarious or what? So what does this have to do with Cache' Connections, you ask? You might be relieved to read that this is not about how hard we have worked. You might be surprised to know I am talking about you, if you are single. We have heard such comments as: "If God wants me to be married, he will bring me a mate." I was reminded recently how Jesus often chose to work in partnership with those he touched, instead of waving his magic God-wand. For instance, in John 9:1-7, to heal a blind man, Jesus made some mud and rubbed it on the man's eyes, but he instructed the man to walk to the Pool of Siloam to wash himself. Additionally, he told the crippled man in Matthew 9:6 to rise, take up his bed, and go home. I believe the Lord works in partnership with our efforts. If you want to sell a house, you hire a realtor and put a sign in the yard. If you want to land the job, you put on your best outfit and come prepared. If you want to find a date, you..... hmmm......
Friday, April 11, 2008
Did you hear it? Twice... on American Idol. This Wednesday and Thursday. Yes - two days in a row, over 30,000,000 people heard the name of our Lord and Savior lifted up in glorious praise singing Darlene Zschech's song (photo above.) I heard it is the No. 1 iTune being downloaded. There have been other faith-based songs on Idol lately, including Dolly Parton's special performance last week, singing "Jesus and Gravity." I just want to pause and give God praise and glory, and thanks to Fox, Idol, etc. for this platform for Jesus. It is cool to be a Christian.
- Members will fill out a detailed questionnaire that will also include information about their "faith walk" and the future mate they are looking for.
- Once completing the questionnaire, members will be shown 5 possible "connections" at a time with a prompt on how many more are waiting to be seen.
- Members will then categorize those potential matches as a favorite, possibility, not interested, or communicate now.
- As each potential connection is categorized, more potential matches will filter in to show a maximum of 5 connections at a time. In other words, at one sitting, members can see an unlimited amount of connections, but if there are more than 5 possibilities, members must categorize one in order for another one to show up.
- This method helps members focus on each possible connection and creates less confusion than seeing too many at a time.
- The system will be extremely easy to use and offer a lot of explanation and give a graphic display on each section.
Have a great weekend!
Sunday, April 6, 2008
don't you just love it when your scripture or devotional reading serves just like salve on a painful wound? today i read just what the doctor ordered in my "new day new you" devotional written by joyce meyer. Romans 8:37 "Yet amid all these things we are more than conquerors and gain a surpassing victory through Him Who loved us." joyce begins by stating that we need to have a sense of triumph. believing we are more than conquerors (man, that is hard to spell!) gives us confidence. i confess to hearing the enemy lately throwing doubts my way about cache's future. joyce says we must take a step of faith and decide to be confident in all things. kim and i have taken that step of faith; now it is just a matter of maintaining the confidence and continuing with what God has planted in our hearts. it is not easy stepping out of the boat... into the deep waters. we must keep our eyes on Jesus lest we slip back into the dark waters of doubt and complacency. joyce says "confident people get the job done; they have the ministries that are making a difference in the world today. they are fulfilled because they are succeeding at being themselves." my itching ears needed to hear that today :)
Thursday, April 3, 2008
Tuesday, April 1, 2008
Thanks to all who have answered our survey. A lot of people have expressed their opinions that it is crucial that they will be in the company of like-minded believers. Linda and I have spent a lot of time researching other sites, talking to single Christians and reading about the problems involved in online dating. First of all, Cache' Connections is not for everyone. We are a niche' site that is designed exclusively for Christian singles who believe in following biblical standards in relationships. This is not out of a desire to set ourselves above others or to hurt feelings, but it is designed to help those who are committed to these standards. Statistics show that growth membership in large, all-encompassing sites is stagnated, but membership in niche' sites, such as ours, is increasing. People who are looking for something specific, such as religious beliefs, are finding the all-encompassing sites are not meeting those needs to specifically match them with others sharing their core value system. Cache' has several safeguards set up to assure members they are in the company of other believers. As a result, there will not be the necessary time-consuming-effort of sifting through potential matches that don't have the same foundational beliefs. Of course, there can never be any complete guarantees, but we have found no other site that has similar safeguards.
- Introductory video - everyone who requests membership will be directed to this video which will explain the biblical foundation upon which Cache' Connections is formed
- Faith statement agreement - all members who request membership will be asked to sign off on 4 basic, non-denominational faith statements (see below)
- Photos - all members must post two photos (headshot and full body) taken against a plain background to ensure they are current. Members can post other photos also.
- Profile and photo preview - all photos and profiles will be previewed within 24 hrs. before being posted on the site
- Questionnaire - includes a section about a person's faith walk - a new Christian or more mature - wherever you are in this journey...you are welcome!
It seems a lot of people are discouraged over experiences with other sites that are set up for Christians, but not run by Christians. Be assured that everyone on staff at Cache' Connections is a believer and has your best interests at heart!
- I believe the Bible is the inspired Word of God and is the supreme and final authority in doctrine and practice.
- I believe in the one and only true God who exists in three persons: the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.
- I believe that Jesus Christ is the eternal Son of God, who through His perfect life and sacrificial death atoned for the sin of mankind.
- I believe that salvation is by grace through faith alone in the person and work of Jesus Christ.
Questions, concerns? Leave us a comment.