The boy who didn’t die or go to heaven

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Books / Faith

This has been buzzing around the web for the last couple of days… here are the words of Alex Malarkey who claimed he had died and visited heaven.

By the way, his book sold millions of copies… millions!

An Open Letter to Lifeway and Other Sellers, Buyers, and Marketers of Heaven Tourism, by the Boy Who Did Not Come Back From Heaven.

Please forgive the brevity, but because of my limitations I have to keep this short. I did not die. I did not go to Heaven. I said I went to heaven because I thought it would get me attention. When I made the claims that I did, I had never read the Bible. People have profited from lies, and continue to. They should read the Bible, which is enough. The Bible is the only source of truth. Anything written by man cannot be infallible. It is only through repentance of your sins and a belief in Jesus as the Son of God, who died for your sins (even though he committed none of his own) so that you can be forgiven may you learn of Heaven outside of what is written in the Bible… not by reading a work of man. I want the whole world to know that the Bible is sufficient. Those who market these materials must be called to repent and hold the Bible as enough.
In Christ, Alex Malarkey.

Read the full Huffington Post article here.

I feel a little sorry for Alex to be honest… we’ve all told lies to get attention from people, perhaps not on this grand scale but, he is only 16 and the injuries he sustained all those years ago will affect him for the rest of his life. He fabcricated this as a child after suffering a huge physical trauma. That’s massively sad even though it does not in any way excuse the lies. The Malarkey family will always be the people who lied about heaven and profited [for a time] from gullible christians the world over.

But, here’s the thing… book publishers, book sellers and christians have sucked up an awful lot of similar stories in recent years with an alarming lack of discernment. And for what? Money? Book sales? Fame?

The ‘christian book industry’ needs to take a long hard look at itself!

Your Digital Media Solution should be slow

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A social media strategy for your business! A dedicated town centre digital media solution… whatever way you are labelling your plans and ideas, a slow disciplined approach is best.

Slow… because it takes time but also because you need to really think about what you are doing. Simple right?

Spend the time it takes to do social media properly, or don’t even bother being there. It’s a truly valuable marketing channel that deserves your time and brain-power. You need to be disciplined and make time to plan everything from content generation right through to time for communication – which is still the most important thing of course! Always, always make sure you have a valid case for being present on a platform, time is precious, and many a business has lost it in social media.

Read the full article Social Media Marketing is Painstakingly Slow here.

Why am I saying this?

Our input into Ballymena Today is charged with a belief that you can’t rush these things. There’s no quick fix. The same goes for Coffee Northern Ireland and every other business and organisation whose social media and online content we are involved with managing and producing.

We write about Ballymena because we love our town and believe that it’s beneficial and effective to do so. We aren’t just winging it… same goes for Coffee NI… and the others.

I’ve been around this thing for a really long time and making a lasting impact that really influences and changes things… well, that takes time!

Terry made us a table

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Terry Design

Over the past year coffee has kind of taken over our workspace in the kitchen… not entirely… but, the coffee grinder wasn’t in the best place and when I would set up to make coffee for more than one person I’d be hogging precious bench space. We needed a solution and our small kitchen table was too low to use so, after some thinking we contacted Terry Design to see if they would make us a table…

I blogged about this earlier today on Coffee Northern Ireland here.

The work of Terry Design is a really important part of the coffee community story that’s been expanding here in Northern Ireland over the past 18 months so, it was a no-brainer to ask them to help us when we needed a table. It’s a simple and tough pallet top on sputniks and, instantly solved the bench space issue in our kitchen that we’d caused with coffee clutter.

Simple, tough… and it’s helping me keep our worktops free from coffee related clutter.

So lots of people are asking about arm knitting

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So lots of people are asking about arm knitting – it apparently is all the buzz right now. Lots of people are also laughing at / mocking me for knitting without needles (or sticks as I keep calling them). But cease and desist people because a quick flick through Pintrest brought forth these great projects which were created by arm knitting.






Well, who is laughing now. The great news – a scarf takes up to an hour, the middle blanket took 3 hours. The possibilities are endless (as long as a rectangle is what you want). I learn from this excellent tutorial at Flax and Twine.

Currently I have mastered a scarf / snood which too an hour and I only needed to be cut free once. Onwards and upward from here on. The snow has inspired me to keep going. Arm knitting is the future.

Star Wars 001

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Books / Design
Star Wars 001

I’ve never really been big into comics… this is Star Wars though and, with new films on the way who knew I would get so excited about these.

Luke Skywalker and the ragtag band of rebels fighting against the Galactic Empire are fresh off their biggest victory yet-the destruction of the massive battle station known as the Death Star. But the Empire’s not toppled yet! Join Luke along with Princess Leia, smugglers Han Solo and Chewbacca, droids C-3PO and R2-D2 and the rest of the Rebel Alliance as they strike out for freedom against the evil forces of Darth Vader and his master, the Emperor.

Written by Jason Aaron (Original Sin, Thor: God of Thunder) and with art by John Cassaday (Astonishing X-Men, Uncanny Avengers), this is the Star Wars saga as only Marvel Comics could make it!

Star Wars  001

If you love the Star Wars movies and grew up with the franchise like so many folks my age then you will love these.

Check out this edition here but, go quickly if you want to get a copy. You can also subscribe to the series here.

Over 1 Million copies of this comic were pre-ordered – see The Guardian story here – so. it’s safe to say these are going to cause a stir in 2015.

This might be my guilty pleasure for this year.