Bill Hybel’s interview: “The Secret of Strategic Neglect”

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When it comes to an example of someone with a burning passion for the importance of Leadership, few people would stand out more in my mind than Bill Hybels.

Recently, I came across the following interview that  Marshall Shelley and Drew Dyck from Christianity Today did with him about schedules, burnout, replenishment, and “strategic neglect.”

I think you will benefit from the insights of this man who has the resume and built up the credibility of proven leadership over several decades.

Bill Hybels on Leadership

Poetry: Carnival Ride

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For those who are used to receiving my typical posts, you will find something different in this poetry post. This is a poem that is a part of a Poetry collection that comes from a time of my my searching days

Carnival Ride

The group of friends gather,

a reunion of old pals,

a time for catching up,

on past and present tales.

One friend slips away,

to make a secret deal,

paying cash for abstract pleasure,

movement on a wheel.

The friend returns with tickets

and distributes them with care,

“it’s the best that I can do,

I’d take them and beware.

Here’s a toast to all of us,

it’s good to see you all,

this ride will be a trip,

if you need me simply call.”

Aboard the ride they go,

their heads about to spin,

escape from simple life

to a world where no one’s been.

The rush grows more intense,

no way of coming down,

faster goes their insights,

and the wheel which goes around.

One friend yells in fear,

“my face is getting hot,

I can not feel my hands,

it’s those tickets that you got.”

The others begin to fear,

their lives pass before their eyes,

this ride is too intense,

different from other highs.

Suddenly, the leader groans,

his face looks all of fright,

“My arms are -look, dissolving,

they’re turning ghostly white.

Ahhh, my head is being crushed,

what am I to do?

Someone stop this ride

When will this trip be through?’

Shivering in his shoes,

the pain becomes too great,

he stumbles off the wheel,

determining his fate.

The ride begins to slow,

as his friends stand over him,

“he lived his life too hard,

always out there on a limb.”

Tips on talking to others

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Recently, I had two conversations with people, one was a young man, late teens, and the other person was a middle-aged adult.  Both of them had expressed concerns over being able to talk with people.  Where do you start? What can you talk about? etc.

To those who have followed this blog, you’ll recognize this slide (My Balance Sheet). My Balance Sheet Sometimes I feel like George Washington Carver and his discoveries of over 300 uses for the peanut.  I don’t know how many applications and insights I have come to understand from this slide, but here is one more:  as a guide to helping a person have conversations.

So, here are a couple of suggestions:

  • begin your conversation with “superficial/non-threatening topics of conversation, such as FAMILY (are you married? for how long? do you have children? what are their names? are they involved with many activities?, etc.), STEWARDSHIP (think material possessions (cars, houses, golf clubs, cell phones, etc.), and WORK (where do you work? for how long? what do you do?, etc.)
  • please keep in mind you are not gathering information, but trying to better understand the person you are talking with.
  • depending on the level of transparency, you might be staying on these three topics for some time, going deeper and deeper in the things that are being shared, but depending on how the conversation goes, you…
  • might also begin to talk about other matters, such as VOLUNTEERING activities, or what is done in their LEISURE time.—–again, the point is to continue developing deepening relationship and points of connection
  • another direction the conversation might go is in the way of PERSONAL HEALTH (what do you do for exercise, dieting, mutual friendships, etc.) and lastly, DEVOTION TO GOD (when I say “lastly” it is not because this area of responsibility is the least important (I think this is the most important of all areas of responsibility), but because this area is so personal, and so important that at least, generally, you will not want to go there real quick without developing some kind of basis of trust, where you can freely discuss this vital area.

Poetry: Departure

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For those who are used to receiving my typical posts, you will find something different in this poetry post. This is a poem that is a part of a Poetry collection that comes from a time of my my searching days

Departure

Farewell’s and bye-bye’s ,

sorrow and tears,

last minute hugging,

departure is near.

The people find their seats

on the Windward 09,

no destination mentioned,

a travel into time,

difference in backgrounds,

differences in smiles,

all having different meanings,

all have different styles.

Searchers of their hearts,

it’s known now that its time,

for them to depart in quest,

their destiny they must find.

All sit and are awaiting,

as the engine yells a cheer,

the wheels respond by moving,

and the pilot begins to steer.

Movement on the runway,

then quickly in the sky,

our hearts absorbed by energy,

burst out and begin to fly.

Up through the clouds of pleasure,

further from the ground,

escaping life’s confusion,

and my soul in which it’s bound.

Rev up, but don’t floor it!

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Picture any one of these scenes:

Before your boss takes time to understand the situation, you are accused and put down before your co-workers (although you were in the right).

Before your parent takes time to understand you are accused, and put down about your foolishness and lack of responsibility (although what you did was what you were told)

Before your pastor and others at the church take time to understand, you are accused of being self-serving  and your efforts go un-appreciated (although your countless hours of volunteering and concern for others are selfless  and blameless)

Before your spouse takes time to understand your point of view, your spouse goes off on you regarding your foolishness and selfishness (although they have failed to see the reasoning for what you have done that it would make sense)

What is similar in all of these made up examples is a person falsely accused by someone.  Have you ever been there ?  My guess you have, just like I have. So, how should we respond.    One option is puff out your chest and say, “that’s it! I have had enough of your _____ “.   However, my guess is if you go that route, it is not going to end up well.  Sure, you may feel go for a few seconds because you let them have it, but after the “tornado of your words” passes through, there is just painful clean up that will need to take place.

Another option is the route of “Meekness”.    When I first say that word, what do you think of?  Maybe you see a kid getting bullied on the playground- a “wimpy” kind of kid who cant’ defend himself.

But that is not the idea that really is behind the word, “meekness”.   Biblically-speaking, the word means “power under control”.   Picture you pulling up to a stoplight without anyone else on the road. Oh, by the way, you are driving a fast, very fast sportscar.   As you daydream at the light, waiting for the color to change, another car pulls up next to you and starts revving up his engine.  VROOM!  VROOM!  VROOM!

You know the power of your engine under your hood and you know you can beat him, but as the light turns green, you take your foot off the gas pedal, while the guy next to you speeds on off.  You could have raced him, but you didn’t have to and you didn’t.  That is being  meek.

Think of the person, Moses in the Bible.  The Bible says this about him:  “Now the man Moses was very meek, more than all people who were on the face of the earth. (Numbers 12:3 esv)

Why was that?  Well, although he had an intimate relationship with God and was being by used by God to deliver the Israelites from bondage in Egypt, the Israelites were not grateful for his efforts.  In fact, it was just grumbling and grumbling, and grumbling against him. (Ex. 16:2, Numbers 14:2, Ex. 15:22-25, and so many more verses could be listed).

When Moses was abused, under-appreciated, rebelled against by the Israelites, he turned to God and voiced his concerns to Him (all but one time, Numbers 20:2-9—-but that action and attitude of taking matters into His own hands dishonored the Lord and by that one act, Moses was prevented from going into the Promised Land).

Let’s look at one other example from the Bible– Jesus.  When Jesus was being arrested, his disciples tried to protect Him, but Jesus said He needed to let this happen  (He restrained His power and let Himself be horribly abused, beyond-comprehension):

47While he was still speaking, Judas, one of the Twelve, arrived. With him was a large crowd armed with swords and clubs, sent from the chief priests and the elders of the people. 48Now the betrayer had arranged a signal with them: “The one I kiss is the man; arrest him.” 49Going at once to Jesus, Judas said, “Greetings, Rabbi!” and kissed him.

50Jesus replied, “Do what you came for, friend.”d

Then the men stepped forward, seized Jesus and arrested him. 51With that, one of Jesus’ companions reached for his sword, drew it out and struck the servant of the high priest, cutting off his ear.

52“Put your sword back in its place,” Jesus said to him, “for all who draw the sword will die by the sword. 53Do you think I cannot call on my Father, and he will at once put at my disposal more than twelve legions of angels? 54But how then would the Scriptures be fulfilled that say it must happen in this way?”   (Matt. 26:47-54 esv)

Not responding to false accusations or attacks on your character strike at the very core of our pride.  It is nearly impossible to keep from eventually having an outburst, however, with God all things are possible.

Here are just a few tips for you if you are experiencing one of these situations where you are being put under attack:

  1. back off from the situation and gather your thoughts
  2. pray  (understand that you need to be utterly dependent on God to give you a proper perspective on suffering and trust that His Spirit will provide for you the calmness, the words, the attitude each and every moment, especially when you are interacting with a person with whom you are having conflict
  3.  Recognize that through the power of God’s Spirit, you are being transformed to be more like Jesus Christ. That is awesome.  But understand what that really looks like:

    18Servants, be subject to your masters with all respect, not only to the good and gentle but also to the unjust. 19 For this is a gracious thing, when, mindful of God, one endures sorrows while suffering unjustly. 20 For what credit is it if, when you sin and are beaten for it, you endure? But if when you do good and suffer for it you endure, this is a gracious thing in the sight of God. 21 For to this you have been called, because Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example, so that you might follow in his steps. 22 He committed no sin, neither was deceit found in his mouth. 23 When he was reviled, he did not revile in return; when he suffered, he did not threaten, but continued entrusting himself to him who judges justly. 24 He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. By his wounds you have been healed. 25 For you were straying like sheep, but have now returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls.   (1 Peter 2:18-25 esv)

  4. Lastly, as one final benefit God promises to those who are meek – – Matthew 5:5 esv – “Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.” —although I don’t really understand that promise and what it actually means, it  sounds pretty amazing!

What (or Who) are you looking at?

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I love my Christian Faith.   It continues to amaze me.  It is personal practical, and powerful!  (sounds like a good 3 point sermon, huh 🙂

Just curious– would you describe your relationship with God in that same way?

What kind of brought this subject up to me was that I was thinking about how simple our faith in Jesus Christ really is.  It is a personal relationship (not outward “going through the motions” kind of faith, its practical (He wants to do life with us and wants us to submit to His leading and His wisdom in all areas of life), and His ways are powerful ( His ways are not our ways and there is always hope  because He is all-powerful and loving–He is the Sovereign One).

However, although our faith is very simple, yet because of the opposition that comes to our walk with God because of our sinful flesh, a world culture (looking to remove itself from the acknowledgement of a Holy God), and a living Devil, life can get very challenging.

Today’s post is just a reminder.  It’s a passage from the Bible  that I hope encourages you, as it has me to keep on looking to Jesus, instead of the many, many distractions, temptations, and pressures of life.   Having that kind of faith can bring peace and joy to our soul, and is powerful enough for us to move mountains and walk on water: