This week we will continue with listener questions. As you may remember, we just completed our first ever Annual Reader/Listener Survey for this site (and podcast). We got some interesting and surprising results in that survey… and lots of feedback, comments, and questions.
We will answer more questions and comment on more comments. Also on today's episode…
- Tip of the Week
- I address the overreaction to my comments about “radical grace”.
- Would you like to be in a mastermind with me?
- And the always award-winning, much much more.
- Looking for a copywriting gig? Send me a one sheet “sales letter” on why you would be a perfect copywriter for me to hire. 800 words maximum. Also send along any samples you think would convince me you are brilliant. Make the subject line of your email say only: “Blue Fondue”. Send that email to the address I provided in the podcast, and listen to the podcast audio for instructions about what happens next. If you email me with questions, I have not listened to the podcast instructions, I won't be able to answer you.
- Starting this week, every person who submits an audio question for the podcast will receive a free gift (if, and only if, we use your question on the podcast). Click here to submit your audio question.
- Meanwhile, if you would be interested in the possible one-day mastermind with me and 11 other people, where we make radical progress in your business… And if you're not just “interested” but you already know you want to do it, fill in this form. If it looks like you would be a good fit, I will call you myself. (If you just want the “details”, listen to the podcast. I explain all the “details”.)
Conferences where I will be attending and/or speaking:
- Strategic Influence Jan 14-16, 2014, Phoenix, AZ
- NAMS 11 February 7-9, 2014, Atlanta, GA
- Social Media Marketing World, March 26-28, 2014, San Diego, CA
- JV Alert: The Perfect Game April 24-27, Denver, CO
- SCORRE Conference May 5-8, Orlando, FL
Tip Of The Week
This is the official kickoff of one of your suggestions from our listener survey: that I include a copywriting tip in each episode. Each week I will include a tip on how to improve the power and persuasiveness of your copy. In other words, I will help you write copy that moves people to action, whether that action be to buy a product, to opt into a list, or to adopt an idea you are “selling” to them.
This week's tip: the easiest and fastest way to influence anyone is by using what is already influencing them.
This is a restatement of Robert Colliers classic advice: you must enter the conversation that is already taking place in the mind of the reader.
But how do you do this? To get into the mind of your prospect, you need to have tea. No, it's not a beverage. It's a visualization exercise, for which I have coined the term The Empathy Amplifier (T.E.A.). Here's how to do it:
- Gather all the actual data you have about your prospects (the people to whom you are writing).
- Get into a quiet place. Perhaps even have an actual cup of tea.
- Now visualize yourself stepping into the body and life of your prospect. (This is not some form of demonic astral projection, it simply you using your sanctified imagination to understand another person's life better.)
- Walk through every detail of their day that you can imagine: when they wake up, how they wake up, what they see/hear/smell/feel… What they have for breakfast, the kind of car they drive to work, the neighborhood they drive through, the waiter greeted at the office, the emotional state they feel throughout the day… Right up to the moment they walk through the door of home at the end of the workday and collapse onto the sofa to watch TV. Or whatever they do.
- Take your time. Do this exercise thoroughly. Think about what their fears, frustrations, and anxieties are. What is their dominant driving emotion, most of the time?
- When you have bathed yourself in the wash of their experience… Now you can start writing some copy.
In fact, I would love to share some reader examples with everyone else. So if you do this exercise, and write a paragraph or two of copy, and you know there is a difference-send me that copy! I'll share with the world!
Last week I talked about those who resist a “radical grace” approach to the gospel. I mentioned that some people are afraid this is an error, and refer to it as “cheap grace” or “greasy grace”. Their concern is that this teaching that Jesus has already paid the price for our sins… past, present, and future, is a perversion of the gospel. That it gives people license to sin, and makes them bitter, arrogant, and prideful. I said that Grace is not a license to sin. It is what empowers us to overcome sin.
I also knowledge to that some use the word “grace” as an excuse for their sin. But we don't know (a) whether that person IS or IS NOT a true believer… and (B) how and/or when that person will be overcome by God's Grace and led out of a life of sin.
Let me assure you that I got the same objections from more than one person. So if you objected, and you are hearing this, please understand that I am not directing this only at you. I am, in the best way I know, lovingly offering you a different way of considering this issue. I reached my conclusions on these matters based solely on Scripture. I can defend them based solely on Scripture. But that would take an entire podcast to even begin to scratch the surface. So let me summarize this quickly, and perhaps allow some people to rest easy, by saying this:
The grace that Jesus Christ offers lets you completely off the hook for sin. It settles your sin problem once and for all. Past, present, and future. It is not necessary for you to beg for forgiveness every time you cross the line in sin. Even if you do it willfully. Grace is much more powerful than that, and creates within you a new heart that makes it more and more impossible for you to sin.
For the grace of God has appeared that offers salvation to all people. It teaches us to say “no” to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age. Titus [2:11]-12, NIV
Grace does not increase the desire to sin. Preaching this radical grace does not cause people to sin more. What causes that is the very spirit of “religion” which so desperately wants to bind people to rules and regulations. It is this religious spirit that causes well-meaning believers say things like, “Yes, grace is wonderful, but you got to be careful… you've got to make sure you balance that teaching with an emphasis on holiness… and following God's commandments.”
I humbly disagree. We are not under the law, but under grace.
Let's see what the New Testament has to say about the Law.
- The law is an unbearable yoke. (Acts [15:10])
- The law reveals sin but cannot fix it. (Romans [3:20])
- If the law worked then faith would be irrelevant. (Romans [4:14])
- The law brings wrath upon those who follow it. (Romans [4:15])
- The purpose of the law was to increase sin. (Romans [5:20])
- Christians are not under the law. (Romans [6:14])
- Christians have been delivered from the law. (Romans 7:1-6)
- The law is good, perfect, and holy but cannot help you be good, perfect, or holy. (Romans 7:7-12)
- The law which promises life only brings death through sin. (Romans [7:10])
- The law makes you sinful beyond measure. (Romans [7:13])
- The law is weak. (Romans 8:2-3)
- The strength of sin is the law. (1 Corinthians [15:56])
- The law is a ministry of death. (2 Corinthians 3:7)
- The law is a ministry of condemnation. (2 Corinthians 3:9)
- The law has no glory at all in comparison with the New Covenant. (2 Corinthians [3:10])
- The law is fading away. (2 Corinthians [3:11])
- Anywhere the law is preached it produces a mind-hardening and a heart-hardening veil. (2 Corinthians [3:14]-15)
- The law justifies nobody. (Galatians [2:16])
- Christians are dead to the law. (Galatians [2:19])
- The law frustrates grace. (Galatians [2:21])
- To go back to the law after embracing faith is “stupid.” (Galatians 3:1)
- The law curses all who practice it and fail to do it perfectly. (Galatians [3:10])
- The law has nothing to do with faith. (Galatians [3:11]-12)
- The law was a curse that Christ redeemed us from. (Galatians [3:13])
- The law functioned in God's purpose as a temporary covenant from Moses till John the Baptist announced Christ. (Galatians [3:16] & 19, also see Matthew [11:12]-13, Luke [16:16])
- If the law worked God would have used it to save us. (Galatians [3:21])
- The law was our prison. (Galatians [3:23])
- The law makes you a slave like Hagar. (Galatians [4:24])
- Christ has abolished the law which was a wall of hostility. (Ephesians [2:15])
- Paul considered everything the law gained him as “skybalon” which is Greek for “poop.” (Philippians 3:4-8)
- The law is only good if used in the right context. (1Timothy 1:8 – see next verse for the context)
- The law was made for the unrighteous but not for the righteous. (1 Timothy 1:9-10)
- The law is weak, useless, and makes nothing perfect. (Hebrews [7:18]-19)
- (As an aside – that's some fighting talk – no wonder the author of Hebrews remains anonymous to this day!)
- God has found fault with it and created a better covenant, enacted on better promises. (Hebrews 8:7-8)
- It is obsolete, growing old, and ready to vanish. (Hebrews [8:13])
- It is only a shadow of good things to come and will never make someone perfect. (Hebrews 10:1)
This list of scripture, and the commentary, was supplied by my good friend Phil Drysdale. I recommend you read Phil's blog at PhilDrysdale.com
Let me answer clearly this accusation that there is such a thing as “greasy grace”: no, no, no! Grace does not cause disregard for holiness-your religion does.
The true preaching of the gospel of salvation by grace alone always leads to the possibility of this charge being brought against it. There is no better test as to whether a man is really preaching the New Testament gospel of salvation than this, that some people might misunderstand it and misinterpret it to mean that it really amounts to this, that because you are saved by grace alone it does not matter at all what you do; you can go on sinning as much as you like because it will redound all the more to the glory of grace. If my preaching and presentation of the gospel of salvation does not express it to that misunderstanding, then it is not the true gospel.”
Your Further Comments
- More emphasis on selecting niches and keywords. This is my biggest problem.
- I prefer to read the transcription of a podcast.
- Broadcast listener questions
- I like the short format the best.
- I really like the podcast. It would be nice if all blog post were able to be listened to.
Your Further Questions
- Do you have live hands-on workshops about Writing Riches for those of us who could use a tutorial?
- I believe in your message and impressed by you as a person — so my question would be “What can I do to help you be successful Ray?”
- What is the best way to get content and products created without bogging down and missing the market?
- Do you think it's possible to create an income with “just” a Dad blog and podcast?
- Is it really that easy to charge big money for common knowledge? (or maybe I know more than I think I do)
- More details about how you include God in your daily business activities. Very few people mention God and business together (that's why I love your posts/Podcasts). How do you specifically include prayer in your business activities?
What To Do Now
Question: how are you doing on your goals and resolutions so far in the new year? Click here to leave your comments.