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Posts tagged with: Church

We are all stubborn.

Its only good to be stubborn when you are right.  If you are stubborn and wrong, it can be dangerous.  Especially if it deals with spiritual right and wrong…as that kind of stubbornness is eternal.

Are you currently being stubborn and continually finding yourself in the middle of conflict?  If so, it is usually because of only two possibilities.

When two visions are stubbornly in conflict and one is right and one is wrong…then it should be easy to correct this problem…the one that is wrong needs to be asked to change or leave. 

The greater challenge is when two people/groups, who are both right, are being stubborn about something.  The most common way this happens is when two individuals or groups have “right” visions for the future, but they can’t get unity on just one.  Usually one of the right ways is simply not right timing anymore.  (When people say, “That’s how we’ve always done it,” they are right in how they used to do it, but it is no longer good timing to do it that ‘right way’ anymore.)  Two right ways stuck in disagreement are always a great challenge.

What do you do now?  Who gives in?

It depends who the leader is, and the vision that leader has brought to the table.  Leadership matters.  Leadership is influence.  Is the leader you are being stubborn towards higher in position than you in the hierarchy of the institution?  (Please don’t tell me that you work in a non-hierarchical atmosphere)  If you say that…you’re not only stubborn, but naive too.  The buck always stops somewhere.  If the buck stops with you, and you still aren’t moving forward, then that’s another blog about courage for another time.

Organizations / Churches / families / businesses / individuals, get stuck when, ((‘Who is the leader?’)) can’t be answered with unity.

Where does the buck stop?  (This question is a huge problem with too many people/orgs) If you are not the leader and can’t entrust the leader with the ‘buck-stops here’ and the vision…then you have to move on…get your roots out of the way…or you’ll derail the whole thing.  Why would you want to derail the direction, mission, vision of something good?  Pride, Jealousy, Greed, Arrogance, Anger, did I miss one?

Obstacles remain obstacles because of the lack of courage in the highest leader.  The whole vision will remain stuck if the leader doesn’t know how to courageously remove the tree growing in the middle of the tracks.

Be careful with stubbornness.

We stubborn people need to deliberately have our roots grow down deep.  May we, in our lifetime become towering trees with deep and healthy roots. And may we be intelligently stubborn with where we choose for those roots to grow.

Here’s where your roots should thrive…

“Your roots will grow down into God’s love and keep you strong. 18 And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is. 19 May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully. Then you will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God.

20 Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think. 21 Glory to him in the church and in Christ Jesus through all generations forever and ever! Amen.”  Ephesians 3:17-21

If you are encountering ‘trees’ with deep roots continually blocking your path, contact me, and we can talk through some godly strategy and wisdom about the business of tree removal.  I’ve experienced it multiple times, and each time I handle it, it gets a little bit better.  Not easier.  Better.

 


Church and the learning Tower of Pisa

SethGodin.com just wrote a blog asking…”What’s inside the Leaning Tower of Pisa?”

The answer is Nothing. It’s a hollow tube.

One of the most photographed buildings in the world is empty.  But people do not care. It is an iconic building and wows people from all over the world.

I love that this is opposite of the reality of the Church.  The Church’s building sits empty most of the week…but it’s old news that the Church is not a building.

You are the Church. The bride of Jesus. The body of Christ.  Get a couple of people like you together, and God is there with you!  Grasp that!

The big question is, why aren’t people wowed by the Church all over the world?

There are negative and positive answers.

We know the negative reasons.  Do you know the positive ones?  Here’s one to remember…

“Our lives are a Christ-like fragrance rising up to God. But this fragrance is perceived differently by those who are being saved and by those who are perishing. To those who are perishing, we are a dreadful smell of death and doom. But to those who are being saved, we are a life-giving perfume. And who is adequate for such a task as this?” 2 Corinthians 2:15-26

That Scripture asks a very pertinent question in its last verse.  Who is adequate for such a task?

The answer: YOU!  You are adequate just as you are.  Oh, you might have to pick up your cross of sacrifice and live differently than you currently are…but that doesn’t make you inadequate.  It just makes you leaning…limping…wounded.  But that is what makes you remarkable.

I’m not sure I can trust anyone who doesn’t walk with some sort of limp…or lean. The Bible is loaded with  historical records of people that limp and lean.  I’m grateful for my wounds that cause me to now limp.  Your limp tells a story of victory and conquering.  Or it should.  If you’ll allow it, that thing, that wound, which caused the scarring that makes you limp, will make you even more remarkable…yes, your leaning can make you incredible.  There are millions of beautiful buildings around the world…but the ones that lean…they have looooong lines of curious gazers and photographers.

You are adequate.  You are never empty, if you are the Church.  You are worthy.  You can live your life in such a way that some people will go crazy wanting what you have.

Its not easy.  You’ll have to lean into Jesus more than you think is even possible.

 

 

 


What religious symbol is your favorite?

While religious symbols can be important, the church has focused perhaps too much on them instead of the underlying reality they reflect.
 

The manger is feeding animals again. The cross is vacant. The tomb is empty.

 
May we befriend and honor the One who is still alive and visited each of those symbols for a very specific purpose…to provide us the opportunity to claim full forgiveness.
 
Focus on the living Jesus…not the symbols He used.  Jesus is alive and He desires to meet with you daily. Jesus desires you to finish the work He started. He is with us always, to the end of the ages.  If I can personally help you in growing closer to your Creator, Jesus, please let me know…I will walk with you. 

A follower of Jesus’s job description

 

Maturity in Jesus is best described as a joyful friendship with Him.

I am mature in Jesus. It’s my  job to make others want to become mature in Jesus. It is my job to remain mature in Jesus.

I must never stop continually maturing in Jesus.

It’s my job to keep the attitude that I am not the owner of anything, and simply a faithful steward of all things owned by God.

It’s my job to look after the church family and be the standard for obeying Jesus’s teachings and commands.  I pray others will see my example and be inspired to replicate it. 

It’s my  job to keep my act together.  

It’s my job to keep my faith like a child’s.

It’s my job to keep finding new ways of looking at the world, getting in the world, and helping others of the world want to experience the remarkable forgiveness of Jesus.

Even if all my friends believe they’ve arrived and it’s time for someone else to sacrifice. Even if all my friends have quit and left me. I will keep my job, my focus, my determination. 

I must never settle.  I will never retire from the work of changing the populations of heaven and hell. 

There are so many who will be separated from Jesus for eternity if I choose to ignore the above standard.

This is my Job.  It is my choice.

I am a Follower of Jesus.


The METHODS must always change…the MESSAGE must never change!

When I read a great post and I can’t make it any better…I just post it and give credit due to who wrote it.  Way to go Hugh McLeod!  If you’d like to check out more of his stuff…gapingvoid.com 

I love to read his material and reclaim it for the local Church.  I am honored to get to be a part of leading the local Church everyday.  It is not easy.  I must remain a learner the rest of my life if I intend to be effective.

The post that Hugh McLeod wrote below is incredible truth for what the Church needs to understand, develop, and while at it, never grow weary of doing it…unapologetically!

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“We’ve all heard the saying, “business is change” a million times before. We all get it.

But do we, really?

It used to be, you’d fight like hell to get to the top of this one hill, and once you made it, you’d spend the rest of your career, enjoying the view from the top.

That worked fine, back when the world wasn’t changing every 18 months.

18 months!

That’s how long it now takes the old rules to no longer apply.

So you need to be ready. More importantly, your people need to be ready.

That’s what being a leader means now. Making sure they’re ready. Rock on.”

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Let’s go Church!  Our message is always Jesus; crucified, risen from the dead, and returning again.  Let’s obey Him, all the while flexing everything else, so we can help as many unforgiven people truly experience forgiveness from their creator!

Trent