A Transformed Life — Isaac Sundarajan

SundarajanSometimes it takes a crisis for God to get our attention. That is what happened to Silicon Valley executive, Isaac Sundarajan.

“We were about 15 minutes into the flight,” recalls Isaac, “They had just turned off the seatbelt sign when I heard a major explosion. The whole plane instantly dropped several thousand feet. I thought for the first time that I was going to die.” This pivotal event led to a significant breakthrough in Isaac’s Christian faith. Continue reading

PBS Show Highlights Faith in Silicon Valley

In my April 3 post, I wrote about recent events that show how God is working in Silicon Valley. A PBS television show “Religion and Ethics Newsweekly” that aired the weekend of April 4th, highlights the contrast between the typical values of Silicon Valley entrepreneurs and the new breed of Christian entrepreneurs that are rising up.

I was interviewed for this program as were Pat Gelsinger, CEO of VMware and Neil Ahlsten, CEO of Carpenter’s Code — the developer of the prayer app Abide. It is a neat segment that is well worth watching. Let me know what you think by leaving a reply below.

The program follows a brief advertisement.

Something Special is Happening in Silicon Valley!

Frequent readers of this blog are aware that God is doing something special in Silicon Valley – traditionally one of the most secular areas in the country.

Four events over a ten-day span in March add to the sense that God is up to something significant. The 2015 Silicon Valley Prayer Breakfast on March 13 drew a record number of attendees. In addition, there were three “first ever” events — the first Jesus to the Bay church unity event; Transforming the Bay with Christ’s first ThinkTank for pastors interested in opening new churches in the Bay Area; and the first annual Silicon Valley Discipleship Walk for Water.

The Silicon Valley Prayer Breakfast

SVPB 2015Keynote speaker, Kirk Perry, mesmerized the crowd of over 700 people, who showed up at 7:00 am at the 21st Silicon Valley Prayer Breakfast on March 13. Kirk and the other two speakers – Neil Ahlsten and Sehin Belew addressed the topic “Finding Your Calling.” Continue reading

Making a Difference on the Peninsula – Central Peninsula Church

Central Peninsula ChurchCentral Peninsula Church (CPC) is making a difference in our community, specifically with its commitment to heal the brokenness in people’s lives. CPC houses three campuses in the mid-peninsula – Foster City, San Bruno, and Redwood City. I had heard much about CPC and its lead pastor, Dr. Mark Mitchell, but wanted to find out more. Recently I sat down with Mitchell to find out what is different about CPC and to get his view on faith in Silicon Valley. Continue reading

Not Your Typical Silicon Valley CEO — Emily Liggett

Emily Liggett 2It is unusual to find a female CEO of a manufacturing company anywhere, but especially in Silicon Valley – an area with few manufacturing companies and few female CEOs.  But Emily Liggett – CEO of NovaTorque, manufacturer of energy efficient electric motors – is not a typical Silicon Valley CEO. Not only is she a female CEO of a manufacturing company, she is also an effective leader, an accomplished engineer, and a humble, committed follower of Christ. Continue reading

Silicon Valley Entrepreneur Builds Biblical Games for Children — Story of Lusi Chien   

Lusi ChienThere are iPad apps available for just about everything: productivity and organization, fitness, music, photo editing, and a variety of children’s games.  iPad games can be funny, educational and entertaining. No wonder kids who own iPads spend an average of over an hour a day on these devices.[1] But what exactly are they learning from these apps?  Is it valuable time well-spent, or simply mindless entertainment? Lusi Chien started her business, 4Soils, to produce a new kind of app – one that would be fun and entertaining, but also teach children biblical stories and principles. Continue reading

“Finding Your Calling” — The Silicon Valley Prayer Breakfast on Friday, March 13

SVPB hi res logoThe twenty-first Silicon Valley Prayer Breakfast is on Friday, March 13 at the Hyatt Regency, 5101 Great America Parkway, Santa Clara. The theme of this year’s event is “Finding Your Calling.”

Kirk Perry, Google president of Brand Solutions, is thekeynote speaker. Kirk came to Google from a top position at Proctor & Gamble when he sensed that God was calling him to Silicon Valley.  Kirk will talk about his faith journey and how he applies faith to his life, including work.  See my interview with Kirk here.

The event’s second speaker is Neil Ahlsten.  Neil had worked in key management positions at Google for seven years when he heard God’s call to co-found Carpenters to apply technology to major spiritual needs like prayer.  Carpenters recently launched Abide, an app to facilitate prayer.  Last September I posted Neil’s story:  When God Calls, You Better Show Up!

The Silicon Valley Prayer Breakfast brings people together people from around the Bay Area to hear inspiring stories of how God is working in the lives of the speakers.  The event is open to all, regardless of where they are spiritually – from skeptics curious about faith to longtime followers of Christ. The event is a celebration of faith and prayer. Everyone is made comfortable, no matter where they are on their faith journey.

In addition to hearing the speakers, attendees interested in service and volunteer opportunities have the opportunity to peruse the work of a dozen Bay Area non-profit organizations and talk with their representatives at display tables outside the meeting room.

Invite a friend and register early as the event is likely to sell out.

Register online.

A Million Dollar Vision — Walking for Water on March 21

Ruth HardinRuth Hardin has a vision – to raise $1 million to provide sustainable water solutions for some of the one billion people around the world without safe drinking water.

Hardin formed an event called ‘Silicon Valley Discipleship Walk for Water” that takes place on Saturday, March 21. The event started out as an activity for her church, St. Timothy’s in San Jose, in 2014. St Timothy’s senior pastor, Pastor Dan Selbo, had heard a compelling message from Water Missions International, a Christian engineering ministry that provides safe water in 49 countries. What impressed Pastor Selbo was not only that Water Missions was solving water problems, but that it was helping meet the spiritual needs of people in developing countries as well. Continue reading

Serving and Transforming the Bay Area

TBCThe San Francisco Bay Area has one of the lowest percentages of church going people in the U.S. According to a study in 2013 by the Barna Group, church attendance is 30% lower in the Bay Area than average attendance in the U.S. But that may be changing. God is working in the lives of people in Silicon Valley. Continue reading

Venture Capitalist David Lane – Fulfilling His God-given Purpose

David LaneVenture capital is a glamorous, but very difficult business.  The glamour comes when investments lead to breakthrough products and when portfolio companies go public or are acquired.  But less than 10% of start-ups deliver outstanding investment return, and the majority of start-ups fail. “It takes wisdom, insight, hard work, and a little bit of luck to succeed,” says Diamondhead Ventures founder, David Lane.  It also takes humility, perseverance, and a long term perspective to endure when start-ups fail. Continue reading