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)