faith

Are you the reason someone is stuck?

I bet you are and you've never considered it.  I wouldn't have guessed I was the reason until today but I am.  People get stuck because you and I want them to be stuck there.

I was in a conversation today with other leaders around the topic of judging.  We talked about how offended God is when we judge others and we judge ourselves.  All this inspiration came from Sarah Young's brilliant devotional Jesus Calling.   

One of the leaders in the room, his name is Dave, had a unique perspective.  He said that when he reads Jesus' words about forgiveness he sees that Jesus wants us to allow people to grow.  Instead we can judge another person, or ourselves, at a specific time and keep them forever judged as that person regardless if it was two months, or five years, or twenty years ago.

 I think Dave is smart because we both feel the same way about bacon.  Bacon is a gift.

I've thought a lot about what Dave said today and how many people I want to be stuck as who they were when I was hurt, offended, or angered.  It's a slippery slope because I know to the measure I forgive is the measure to which I am forgiven.  I hold a great amount of hope grace plays a part of who I am and grace leaves space for me to become something better.  But do I hold the same hope for others?  Do I hold the same hope for those I have judged?  

Who do you need to let loose?  You might need to stop judging yourself?   

Can we be great leaders if we don't stop to see who we've caused to get stuck?

 

A lady I could arm wrestle reminded me of Jesus

Last summer it was HOT!  I didn't know this could happen in the midwest but my lawn got scorched.  That's right, like your brain on drugs my grass got fried (the pun in that sentence just made your head explode). [youtube nl5gBJGnaXs]

In you reader click here to see the video

I drove to the local lawn and garden store and asked for advice on how to treat the problem because the scorched grass has been replaced by weeds.  When I told the store associate my problem she told me to plant new grass in the midst of the weeds.  She also told me not to put weed and feed or any other treatment on the spot until the grass has the chance to fully grow.  

As soon as she made the suggestion my mind went here...

24 Jesus told them another parable: “The kingdom of heaven is like a man who sowed good seed in his field. 25 But while everyone was sleeping, his enemy came and sowed weeds among the wheat, and went away. 26 When the wheat sprouted and formed heads, then the weeds also appeared.

27 “The owner’s servants came to him and said, ‘Sir, didn’t you sow good seed in your field? Where then did the weeds come from?’

28 “‘An enemy did this,’ he replied.

“The servants asked him, ‘Do you want us to go and pull them up?’

29 “‘No,’ he answered, ‘because while you are pulling the weeds, you may uproot the wheat with them. 30 Let both grow together until the harvest. At that time I will tell the harvesters: First collect the weeds and tie them in bundles to be burned; then gather the wheat and bring it into my barn.’”

Matthew 13:24-43

New International Version (NIV)

Really?  I'm talking to a woman who looks like she could be a great arm wrestling challenge about my scorched lawn and her advice triggers a teaching by Jesus?  Wouldn't it be awesome if you and I could coach and teach like that, in a way where people would encounter the same teaching over and over again?  

Jesus made a teaching stick by:

1.  He knew his audience socially, emotionally, and spiritually - Who they are spiritually determines the material and who they are otherwise determines the method.

2.  He put content to repeatable practices - By speaking to an agricultural community about planting seeds they would constantly re-encounter his story and remember his words.  Even 2000 years later, it came to my mind when I was working on my lawn.

3.  He kept it simple - His point was simple, one will be harvested for good the other will be harvested to be burned.  Sometimes we make application too complicated.  When it doubt go simple.  

As a leader we have to sharpen our ability to provide application to our teaching or coaching.  I think Jesus was pretty good at it, what do you think?

Please leave a comment about what you think made this teaching stick?

Your broken heart is a good thing

Are you involved in something that breaks your heart?

I don't mean that you've bought something in order to support something.  I don't mean you took a week off to go some where.  I don't mean that you give online to something far away.  I mean are you consistently involved in a mission that every time you are near the work your heart breaks for the people it impacts?

Can I be so bold to say that your heart breaking is a good thing?  If our hearts are never effected we are less likely to work urgently to create solutions.  If our hearts are never effected we are less likely to offer comfort.  And so it goes with relief, assistance, aid, food, water...the list goes on and on.  Ultimately, if our hearts are never broken than we will never exit our world and enter into the reality of someone else's.

When was the last time your heart was broken for someone else?  If you can say it's been over a month can I suggest that your life is too comfortable?  I only suggest it because it seems that our hearts were made to feel compassion through a broken heart.

What breaks your heart?

Photo Credit to Carbon NYC

Episode 002: Project Leadership-An interview with Tony Wilks

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