When I was in college and seminary, I paid my tuition by working in construction. Many of the projects we worked on involved tearing down something old and replacing it with something new. The idea was to retain the integrity and charm of the original room or building, while also making it more functional, beautiful, and inviting. Some people call that renovation!


In much the same way, there are many churches in need of missional renovation today. The old, tired, and worn out attitudes, strategies, and (in some cases) values need to be replaced by a new spirit of vitality, passion for the lost, and desire to connect with new, unreached people. The key to doing that is to retain the spirit and integrity of God’s people in mission without blowing the place up!

You can learn some very practical and proven ways to do that by joining me and 1,500 fellow church revitalizers at the annual RENOVATE National Church Revitalization Conference in the Orlando area November 1-3. The conference site is the Aloma Church at 1815 N. Semoran Blvd. in Winter Park, Florida.

Main speakers include Ed Stetzer, Bill Easum, Bob Whitesell, and Tom Cheney (the founder of the conference). There will be 70 church revitalization workshops with 35 nationally recognized speakers. For more information, go to

Here is your personal invitation from Tom Cheyney:

“We have this year a tremendous group of individuals that have a message that must be heard and are willing to partner together with us to raise the level of discussion and equipping in this vital area. With more than 340,000 churches averaging less than 100 in worship today and the American church in decline, the need for an annual event focused on Church Revitalization has never been greater! Our team consists of 49 brothers and sister in the Lord who will be sharing in these three intensive days of revitalization and renewal.

“We are praying for our speakers, praying for the churches in America in need of revitalization, and we are praying for our Lord God to do a great miracle in these churches as we gather together for RENOVATE 2016!”

I will be leading two breakout sessions on how to Open Doors to Your Community. If I don’t see you in one of those sessions or on the conference floor, please stop by and see me at my booth in the Exhibit Hall.

I hope to see you in Orlando!


 “Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock.” (Matthew 7:24)

Baby Steps toward Church Transformation

A few years ago, there was a television commercial promoting Fram Oil Filters. While the spokesman walked around an auto repair shop, a mechanic overhauled an engine in the background. At the end, the spokesperson held up a Fram Oil Filter and said, “The choice is yours. You can pay me now, or you can pay me later!” The message was simple: If you spent a little more on a premium Fram Oil Filter now, then you would avoid the much bigger expense of an engine overhaul later.

If your church is declining in size and vitality, then you have a similar choice. Will you chart a new path now, or will you continue to do what you have been doing until you run out of options and face a major overhaul, or worse?

After over a decade of working with hundreds of churches, we have found a way that churches can “pay now” and avoid disaster later.


The dynamic power in this change process is rooted in the word transformation. Transformation, by its very nature, requires deep and lasting change (Romans 12:2). Such change rarely occurs quickly, easily, or without significant sacrifices. At its core, it requires repentance.

To repent simply means to turn around, to change directions. In the Old Testament, the Hebrew word for repentance is shuv, which literally means to turn around. If a farmer is plowing with a team of oxen, when the animals would get to the end of a furrow, he would yell, “Shuv,” i.e., turn around, go in the opposite direction. Thus, to repent means to turn away from what you are doing and move toward another option.

Declining churches need to turn away from inwardly-focused, self-protective behaviors and turn toward loving God and loving others. They need to adopt activities and behaviors that take them out into their communities with the Gospel.

The transformation of a church occurs when a plurality of people move from being primarily a spiritual club for church insiders to being both a caring assembly and an externally-focused ministry serving others in the name of Jesus Christ. The church therefore seeks to emulate Jesus by serving others rather than being served (Matthew 20:28).

Merely doing “church” better or getting more people in the pews is not the goal and is not acceptable. Nothing short of deep change or transformation is the true goal. When that happens the church will be different, behave differently, be renewed, improve the way it lives out its calling, and ultimately bring more people to Jesus.

Transformation of Patterns

Practically speaking, the transformation of individuals and of churches involves the transformation of patterns. For instance, if you try to lose weight, stop smoking, or change an addictive behavior, it’s not enough to depend upon will power or making a New Year’s resolution. Yes, it begins with commitment and resolve, but there must also be corresponding life pattern changes. Simply wanting to do the right thing is not enough.

David Maister, in his wonderfully-titled book, Strategy and the Fat Smoker, makes this powerful statement: “The primary reason we do not work at behaviors which we know we need to improve is that the rewards (and pleasure) are in the future; the disruption, discomfort and discipline needed to get there are immediate. To reach our goals we must first change our lifestyle and our daily habits now. Then we must summon the courage to keep up the new habits and not yield to all the old familiar temptations. Then, and only then, we get the benefits later.”1

So how do we change our bad habits now so we can gain these wanted benefits later? One way is to begin taking some baby steps!

Baby Steps

Dave Ramsey, the personal finance guru, talks about getting out of debt in “the same way you learned to walk—one step at a time.”2 For instance, it is much easier to take the baby step of starting a $1,000 emergency fund than to take the giant leap of removing a $100,000 of debt. Therefore, start with small, relatively easy to do tasks, like starting a small savings account for emergencies, and eventually you will be able to completely change your lifestyle and reach your ultimate goal of having financial peace.

What would be some meaningful baby steps related to transforming your church and ministry? To put it another way, what can you do now to begin opening doors to your community with the Gospel?

One way to jump-start the process is to take advantage of the expertise and experience gained by others in similar situations. Instead of reinventing the wheel, use something that is tried and true, and you will begin to establish a clear path for your baby steps.

To help you get started, we have developed a workbook entitled Skill Builders: Leadership Tools for Opening Doors to Your Community,3 which provides practical skills to help churches engage their communities with the Gospel. These are skills that can be applied in any kind and size of church.

Consider, for example, the case of a small, stagnant church located on the far western edge of the Ozark Mountains. With an average age of 72, the congregation was known in the community as the “church for old people.” However, after taking some baby steps, the congregation took up the challenge of reaching young families with the Gospel. They planned a special week of summer camp activities for children. The members developed their own lessons and activities. To help ensure maximum participation, they provided meals and snacks. The summer program concluded with a Mexican dinner and mariachi band concert. The whole community was invited.

To prepare for the crowd, members were asked to park in a vacant field across the road. They used golf carts (one of the perks of having elderly members in your church!) to ferry members to the door. The paved parking lot at the church was reserved for guests. When a local restaurant heard of the event, they volunteered to donate the tacos, rice, and beans for the meal. The members donated the dessert. With over 500 people in attendance, this was the single largest event in the church’s history. Over 80 prospects were identified. The congregation is building on this success with a weekly afternoon camp experience for children. More than that, the church is now thriving and growing and is no longer viewed as just a “church for old people.”

Resolve to Start the Process

Taking baby steps like the ones mentioned above is a great way to begin breaking old patterns and start revitalizing your church and ministry. Certainly, there are others as well. (Check out the other articles on this website for more examples!) What’s really important at this point is that you simply resolve to start the process.

Back when I was growing up on the farm, my dad used to say, “Don’t just stand there, do something!” The point is clear. If you want to accomplish anything worthwhile, you have to get started doing it. And what could be more worthwhile, indeed eternally important, than being instruments of Christ in opening doors to your community for the Gospel?

The tendency, of course, after reading an article like this is to put it aside and not really do anything differently. If you don’t believe me, take a look at the dozens of books and binders and CDs that you have in your office, church, or home right now and then mentally make a list of how they fundamentally changed your life. The reality is that probably none of them made a significant difference. This article won’t either, unless you allow the Holy Spirit to spur you to take action and start doing some things differently.

The choice is yours. Do you want to pay now or pay later? Will you take seriously Jesus’ command to “go and make disciples of all nations” and experience the joy the angels feel whenever even one sinner repents? By investing yourself and your congregation in a church revitalization process now, you can be sure that, by God’s grace and power, there will be those who will not have to pay later for their sins in hell, because they will come to know the One who has paid for everything by giving His life for us all.

1 David Maister, Strategy and the Fat Smoker (Boston: Spangle Press, 2008).

Dave Ramsey, “Take Control of Your Money One Step at a Time”.

3 Terry Tieman and Dwight Marable, Skill Builders: Leadership Tools for Opening Doors to Your Community (Cordova, TN: Transforming Churches Network, 2012).

What Small Churches Can Learn from Great Inventors

Greenfield Village

I have always had a fascination with history and especially with innovators and inventors who have changed the course of history with their creativity, skill, and just plain stubbornness in sticking to their principles and goals. That fascination, and appreciation, was sparked again this past week when I had the privilege of visiting one of my new favorite places in the world – Greenfield Village in Dearborn, Michigan. If you have never been there, this is a must-see! For those who are unfamiliar with this gem of Americana – and I was until a year ago – it is a place put together by Henry Ford where America’s past can be experienced in the present.

Ford’s idea was that “we ought to know more about the families who founded this nation, and how they lived. One way to do that is to reconstruct as nearly as possible the conditions under which they lived.” And that’s exactly what he has done at Greenfield Village, an enchanting place where there are “83 authentic historic structures, from the lab where Thomas Edison gave the world light to the workshop where the Wright Brothers gave us wings…[to] the farmhouse where Henry Ford grew up.”

As I walked through these “authentic historic structures” and listened to the actors portraying these giants of the past, it struck me that these great historical icons weren’t just technical geniuses; they also possessed a huge amount of wisdom that is still prudent for us to apply to our world today. And, I believe that is especially true for small churches.

Thomas Edison

One of the greatest minds and inventors in American history was Thomas Edison. While probably best known for inventing the light bulb (although what he really invented was a practical, long-lasting filament made of carbon fiber) and “electrifying” America, he also held an amazing 1,093 patents, which included the phonograph, movie camera, storage battery, and the electric generator. He was truly a remarkable and talented man!

But here’s the thing: the biggest reason for his success wasn’t immense talent and intellect, although he certainly possessed those traits; rather it was hard work and belief in himself. So…with that in mind, here are five great truths we can learn from the likes of Thomas Edison and other great inventors.

Lesson #1: Success Begins with Hard Work

Edison understood better than most how important hard work is in reaching one’s goals. It was not uncommon for him to work hours and days on end – often without a break –until a task was completed. He even had a bed installed in his library at his lab in Menlo Park, New Jersey, so that he wouldn’t have to take the time to go home if he was in the middle of an important project. Now that’s an extreme that we are not recommending for pastors and church leaders, but you get the point!

Great churches don’t just happen. Certainly, anything we accomplish in life and ministry is through the grace and power of God, but there is also a huge correlation between the amount of work put into something and the results that are achieved.

Small churches are no exception. They are not going to get larger (or better) without a certain amount of sweat equity, beginning with the pastor. Anyone who thinks that a small church is an opportunity to coast or take it easy or ease into retirement or that it simply won’t make any real difference (or throw in your own excuse for not giving your best) is sadly deluding himself.

“Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work.”  — Thomas Edison

Tieman Edison 90 percent and hard work

Lesson #2: Never Give Up

Edison was once asked if he felt like a failure, because his thousands of attempts to invent a usable light bulb didn’t work. His reply: “I haven’t failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that didn’t work.”  Well, by not giving up, he finally found a filament (and a bulb created by using an innovative vacuum pump) that did work and, as they say, the rest is history. He literally changed the way that people lived and worked in America and around the world!

In a small church setting, it can be pretty easy to feel like a failure, especially when we start comparing ourselves to larger ministries around us. As a result, there is a tendency to give up, or more likely, not give our full effort. That is a huge mistake! The fact is we reap what we sow. That’s a biblical truth! (Galatians 6:7) Therefore, we need to continue to sow ministry and gospel seeds, if we want to have any hope for good results in the future. It may not happen right away – in fact, it usually doesn’t – but eventually there will be fruit! That’s God’s promise (John 15:5), and the experience of Edison, Ford, and other great inventors!

Tieman Edison try again

“Failure is simply the opportunity to begin again, this time more intelligently.” — Henry Ford

 Lesson #3: Believe in Yourself

Henry Ford was a man who came from humble beginnings and a tough childhood. He was born on a farm in Greenfield Township, Michigan and his mother died when he was 13. And yet, he went on to form his own multi-national company, set the record for most cars built of any one model – the Model T – and revolutionized the manufacturing industry by perfecting the moving assembly line.

Tieman Ford

Like Thomas Edison, the reason for Ford’s success wasn’t that he was smarter than everyone else. It was because he worked hard and believed in himself. And others believed in him, as well. While working for the Edison Illuminating Company, Ford approached Edison with his ideas about gasoline-powered automobiles. With Edison’s encouragement, Ford went on to create his own car company. Ford always believed that he would do something important with his life and work, and he did!

As a small church pastor or leader, your life and ministry is important, too! There are people who are looking to you for leadership and direction. They expect competence, character, and consistency in everything that you do. They believe (or they should) that you have been called to serve them and their community as God’s servant and undershepherd. To behave and think in any other way than that would be a disservice to those following you and a discredit to the divine office to which you have been called. So believe in yourself, believe God has called you to where you are for a reason, and others will, too!

“Your worth consists in what you are and not in what you have.”  – Henry Ford

Lesson #4: Experiment: Try Something New

We have already chronicled the importance of hard work and never giving up. These truisms naturally coalesce in another life lesson, the importance of experimentation. Edison demonstrated his belief in this idea by trying over 10,000 different filaments in his incandescent light bulb. Even after he came up with a workable model, he continued to tinker with success, ultimately settling upon a carbonized bamboo filament that would last over 1,200 hours in his new bulbs.

Tieman Einstein

Edison was never satisfied with his inventions. He not only wanted to improve them, he also wanted to move on to that which could be even bigger and better. In the church, it seems that we often do the opposite. Once we find something that works – or more likely, worked once upon a time, but doesn’t any longer – we stick with it no matter what. This is particularly true in smaller churches. If it was good enough for my parents and grandparents, it is good enough for me! And yet, the reality is that over 80% of our churches are not growing, in large part, because we are still using methods and strategies that haven’t worked in decades.

Why not try something new? What’s the worst thing that could happen? It could fail just as miserably as what we are already doing. What’s the best thing? It might actually work! Remember Einstein’s famous definition of insanity?  “Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.” Maybe it’s time to try something new!

Lesson #5: Trust God for the Results

When Henry Ford was asked if he ever worried, he replied: No. I believe God is managing affairs and that He doesn’t need any advice from me. With God in charge, I believe that everything will work out for the best in the end. So what is there to worry about?”  Another wise man once said, “Do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about…what you will wear. But seek first [God’s] kingdom and [God’s] righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” (Matthew 6:25, 33) Oh, that wise man was also God!

In the end, we don’t know how all of our hard work, perseverance, self-belief, and experimentation will pay off. (Although I think we would all agree, that things will be way better than if we hadn’t invested in those pursuits!) What we can be sure of is that our great and loving God will be with us every step of the way and that He will give us the results that He desires!

Edison, Einstein and Ford were great inventors and thinkers, and there is much that we can learn from them. They believed that with hard work and dedication to an idea anyone could accomplish anything. In so doing, they accomplished some amazing things.

What about you? What’s your dream for the future? What would you like to see God do in your life and ministry? Whatever it is, if you are willing to work hard, keep after it no matter what, keep believing in yourself and your dream, and willing to try new things, there is absolutely no reason that you can’t accomplish your God-sized goal. Never underestimate the power of God, yourself, or your church!

Revitalization Game Plan: An Interview with Terry Tieman

The following is excerpts from a fall 2015 interview with Terry Tieman. The complete interview is available in Today’s Vital Church, Volume 2.

Terry Tieman, who lives in the Memphis area with his wife Becky, began his career in ministry as a pastor in Michigan and Arkansas. He then served for 13 years as Mission Executive of the Mid-South District of the Lutheran Church – Missouri Synod (LCMS).

In January 2009, Terry became the Executive Director of Transforming Churches Network (TCN), which helps churches become more effective in reaching their communities with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. TCN’s transformation process – which is based on Biblical principles and was developed through worldwide research on effective mission movements and pilot projects – has successfully changed hundreds of churches from the inside out. Terry continues to gain front-line experience as Revitalization Pastor at Immanuel Lutheran Church in Memphis.

In this interview, Terry explains how a church can put together a revitalization game plan.

An Inward Focus

…I began to get frustrated with our church planting process. We planted so many churches that got stuck at 75 or 100 in worship — some grew to be larger than that, but most didn’t. Now some of that was because they were in smaller communities, but there were some, especially in larger cities, that should have gotten bigger.

Several of us Mission Executives around the country formed a task force and did a study…What we discovered was that most of these churches were planted out of convenience. They were Christians, primarily Lutheran Christians, who just didn’t want to drive 25 or more miles to the nearest church of their denomination, so we had helped them start new churches in their area. (In a few cases, it was more of an ethnic or immigrant situation.) Once they got to around 100 in worship, they thought that they had enough people to support themselves, and so they didn’t work very hard at outreach. That “outreach DNA” just wasn’t in most of those churches. The planted ones were just like the old ones. They were inward-focused.

Bolinger: They were just attracting like-minded Lutherans in their communities, not bringing in people who didn’t know Christ.

Tieman: Right. They were bringing in some dechurched folks – who had gotten disgruntled with their former church or who were excited about a new church plant – but there wasn’t a lot of conversion growth, people going from not knowing Jesus to coming into the Kingdom.

Bolinger: Were you seeing a similar dynamic in established [LCMS] churches?

Tieman: Yes. And that’s what got me started with TCN. It was a realization that most of our churches were inward-focused. Outreach and connecting to the community were really not a passion. They knew they should do it – it’s Scriptural – but it wasn’t very well organized or at the top of the priority list for pastors or churches. Only when they got desperate, seeing so many fewer people in the pews, did they consider making outreach a priority. But it wasn’t in the DNA of a lot of churches. It was not seen as the primary reason they exist: to make disciples for Jesus and reach lost people.

People in our denomination started talking about what we could do to get churches to start focusing outward instead of inward…Most older churches are declining, because they have forgotten their first love, they have forgotten why they started. A church gets complacent after a while. It gets a building that it has to maintain, and programs to keep going, and these things become more important than sharing the Gospel with the community and making disciples. A church often gets complacent because its decline is so slow that it doesn’t even recognize that it’s happening…

Things don’t have to continue to decline and deteriorate. They can be better. Your best days can be ahead of you. From a Biblical perspective, it’s Law and Gospel. (Laughs.) The Law is that what you’re doing is wrong and needs to change. The Gospel is that there’s good news: God can change the situation; He can empower you and use you to make disciples.

Of course, you really need to have outward-focused pastors and help them through the change process. That’s why we have developed Learning Communities, where we bring pastors together and show them a new and better way. The challenge is to help pastors change the way they do ministry so that they’ll stick to it and not blow up their church by going too fast or making too many changes without getting ownership from the congregation. Directional coaching can help here, too.

Hinge Factors

Bolinger: Let’s consider a church that recognizes that it’s declining and has a sense of urgency about turning things around. Leaders at the church are willing to “shake things up” and do things differently. People at the church have a sense of hope that they can do this. What are the critical things that they need to do in the first year?

Tieman: The four components are vision, relationships, ministry, and structure. You need to have these components in the right places in your church.

Imagine that a church is a car. A declining church usually has structure – governance, how you run your church – in the driver’s seat. The church focuses on maintaining facilities and programs. It’s about survival. A typical small, declining church does not have enough people to man all the positions that are required by the constitution and by-laws. Boards and committees don’t get completely filled, and many people wear numerous hats. They spend all their time and energy essentially going through the motions, having meetings, and trying to maintain the traditions of the past. Meanwhile, they’re not getting into the community and sharing the Gospel. There’s no sense of excitement or the power of the Holy Spirit working amongst them.

When structure is driving, the church is focused inward. We want to put structure in the back seat, because we want vision in the front seat. The vision is a clear picture of a preferred future. Where does God want this church to go? To determine that vision, the leaders of the church must stop focusing inward and start focusing on the community that they want to reach.

…there are human factors, or hinges, that open the door for the Gospel into the local community. Through our research, we have identified eight Hinges that churches can use to open their doors to the community. So the first step is for a church to do an assessment survey to find out how well they are doing in each of the eight areas.

The eight Hinges fall into two different groups of four. The first group applies to leadership, especially the senior pastor, and the second group refers to the congregation as a whole. Specifically, the pastor factors are:

  1. Empowering God’s People for Works of Service
  2. Personal Leadership
  3. Visionary Leadership
  4. Bridge-Building Leadership

The congregation or church factors are:

  1. Community Outreach
  2. Focused Prayer
  3. Functional Board
  4. Inspiring Worship

Of course, there are lots of surveys and assessment tools out there for churches to use. The big difference is that ours is tied to a systematic revitalization process called Seasons of Discovery. This is a step-wise church transformation process delivered in four seasons over two or more years, designed for easy integration into the parish calendar, that helps the congregation engage their community with the Gospel. This approach has been very effective in hundreds of congregations all over the country. In every case, congregations that were inward-focused have begun to open the doors of their church outward and have had a missional impact on their community.

The key ingredient in the process is that the pastor receives a trained coach. The coach, who is an expert in the revitalization process, helps the pastor and congregation work through the various hinge factors, especially those where improvement is most needed. TCN provides a whole package of resources, including sermons, bible studies, training guides, leadership lessons, etc., for each of the four seasons. And what are the four seasons you ask? They are 1) Preparation, 2) Visioning, 3) Outreach, and 4) Empowerment.

First Steps

…after the Hinge Survey is taken and a coach begins working with the pastor, the next step is to recruit a core group of people to begin doing missional activities. We call these folks People of Passion because they are passionate about Jesus – they love their Lord. They love their local church. They love their community, and they want to see it change for the better. They want to see people coming into the Kingdom. Every church, no matter how small, has some people like that. We ask the pastor to recruit as many as he can. We start with that group. This will be the leaven in the loaf, a way to establish critical mass.

We have them start with prayer walking. That’s the first session. What most churches want to do is study things to death, and they never get around to doing anything. We give them 10 minutes of orientation, and then we go do it. There are lots of variations of prayer walking, which I won’t go into now. They just pray for what they see, and they get a sense of their community and what God’s already doing. They almost always come back excited, because they see God doing stuff, and they realize that things can change. So it always begins with prayer. They need to go into a period of prayer and pray like they’ve never prayed before.

The next step is community surveying. You go back to the same places you prayer walked – perhaps joined by additional people who are excited about the possibilities, so your group is expanded – and you ask people questions. We have three very simple, non-threatening questions that we recommend you ask:

  1. Describe our church in three words. – This indicates if anyone in the community knows who your church is and, if so, what their perception is. That’s very powerful.
  2. What needs do you see people struggling with in this community? – You ask about other people’s needs instead of the needs of the people whom you are asking the questions.
  3. If you were interested in finding a new church, what qualities or characteristics would you be looking for?

All of the questions are non-threatening. You’re not trying to witness or solicit, unless, of course, they ask you. Some groups knock on doors. We generally don’t recommend that. Just go someplace where you’ll find people.

Then you go to community leaders: the mayor, the city council, the Chamber of Commerce, schools, police. We have a list of questions you can ask them, but you’re basically asking what the needs of the community are. Usually, they’re happy to tell you. You finish with a very important questions, which is, “How can we help you meet the needs of the community?” In other words, “How can we partner with you to help you do your job better?” Community leaders love that. Nobody asks them that! People usually come to complain. You’re starting to establish partnerships in the community.

…Once you have worked through these missional activities under the guidance of your coach, the next step is a visioning day. You bring the leaders of the church, the influencers of the church, the people of passion together, and you go through a process where, by the end of the day, you can write a vision statement. You are trying to discern what God is telling you to do. You choose the mission targets where you are going to start based on your prayers and where the needs of the community intersect with the gifts of the church. Depending on the size of the church, there will be one to four targets. A tiny church can handle only one; a large church may have four.

Once you have determined your vision and your initial mission targets, then you need to determine your main strategies or ministries. Most churches are doing way too many things, and they may not do any of them all that well. Even if they do them really well, the ministries may not be connected to the community – they may just be serving their own members. We try to help them narrow it down so that they do a few ministries really well and connect them to whatever targets they are trying to reach.

All your activities, all your events, and all your programs should be in alignment with your vision and your targets. You should connect all of this to Scripture as to why you are doing it. That becomes the accountability mechanism for the future. You measure an outreach activity or event on how many people from your target showed up.

To determine if all of a church’s activities are aligned with its vision, we would ask the church to do a ministry audit. If they are not [aligned], then the church needs to quit doing them or change them so they are [aligned].

For the rest of my interview with Terry Tieman, pick up a copy of Today’s Vital Church, Volume 1. And be sure to get a copy of Hinges, the book co-authored by Tieman.

Copyright 2015, 2016 Revitalize Ministries, Inc. All rights reserved.