Just had a great talk with my friend Doug Pollock the author of God Space. We've traveled together a bit and always enjoy our conversations.
Here's some random thoughts that emerged after our conversation.
political influences within a church can kill life, momentum, destroy honor and limit genuine creativity.
one guy has served faithfully within his organization for over 40 years. the newly hired powers that be, want him to be put out to pasture. what's wrong with this picture? think about it. 40 years of faithful experience, gone because of political influences.
the fear of man brings a snare. when leaders throw the, 'you'll do what i say because i'm your boss and you could be fired' card, it may be past time to move on. oh, by the way the card is often unspoken, but intuitively understood by all.
don't allow your destiny to be determined by the actions and faith of others. example, get your leading, guidance from your personal relationship with Jesus. don't allow others to dictate your destiny. an other persons direction for your life is a muddy path.
stand for what you believe. don't allow others to pressure you to do anything that violates your conscience. one person stated, 'i'll submit to authority because they are in authority, i'll submit to something because i can be flexible and flow. but i won't submit to authority if it violates a clear Biblical principle or violates my conscience.' one, highway or the bye way, leader once told me 'Steve I detect some rebellion in you...' really? I'm still not drinking the cool-aid.
as the saying goes 'before you jump in bed with someone make sure you can trust that someone.' some jaded-been-twice-burned people ask the question, 'are there really any safe people out there?' i personally also wonder.
focus is all important. focusing on the main reason why we are doing what we do keeps the energy flowing. do you and i know the Big Why we are doing what we are doing?
tip: Jesus had passion for the world and for the church. the great commission is not the great suggestion.
being totally engaged in a conversation is necessary to encourage another person. one salesman took a high-end client out to a game of golf. the problem, the salesman stayed on his phone throughout the game. the client needless to say was not impressed. the salesman may have lost a $1,000,000 account. i wonder what we miss by not being fully engaged.
tip:when you are meeting someone for lunch, or for a conversation. turn off your phone, intentionally focus and become engaged.
some leaders have an outlandish puffed up high view of themselves, which leads to the spirit of arrogance and entitlement. Peter responded, "I too am a man just like you." seems some of the people wanted to make Peter a 'god.' some leaders in our generation love being a god.
some christian leaders have forgotten they are first of all servants, second of all, they are no big deal...apart from Jesus they can do nothing. thirdly, they have forgotten all they have and can be comes down from the Father of Lights. it's a gift, humility and gratitude acknowledges this fact.
influence is one of our strongest tools to effect change in others. influence is best expressed in the context of relationships via a consistency in life style. tip: read Paul's encouragement to Timothy and Titus. and Peter's reflection in Peter. pastoral epistles are called pastoral for a reason.
1 Tim 4 NLT
Be an example to all believers in what you teach, in the way you live, in your love, your faith, and your purity. Until I get there, focus on reading the Scriptures to the church, encouraging the believers, and teaching them. Do not neglect the spiritual gift you received through the prophecies spoken to you when the elders of the church laid their hands on you. Give your complete attention to these matters. Throw yourself into your tasks so that everyone will see your progress. Keep a close watch on yourself and on your teaching. Stay true to what is right, and God will save you and those who hear you.
will i be remembered for how not to lead and how not to treat others? or will i be remembered for how to lead and how to treat others? our choice.
one of the saddest commentaries from people i've met, who are jaded by the church and their leader, is the fact they have learned more what not to do and say, than what to do and say. being a positive example in all areas of life is priceless. some leaders need to take a class in social etiquette. having a focused awareness of others and honed social skills are important.
one prominent church leader when entering into a car show room where i was standing, was described by the service manager as, 'here comes that jerk again.' nice commentary not. made me wonder where and if my jerkyness was showing.
knowledge puffs up. love builds up. in all our growing in knowledge: seminars, books, pod-casts, think-tanks, and God encounters... our love for God and others should always be the aim.
I often question myself, am i increasing in tolerance, flexibility, and growing in love? true knowledge gained should be reflected by an authentic life of service and love.
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