Monday, April 27, 2015

Leadership and Praise

The movers did a good job. I praised them, but the driver was the only one who spoke English. So I gave him extra cash and said, "Share it with the guys however you want." I don't know if he did. A good leader would have shared the praise and the money with the team.

An axiom I follow is: Leaders don't absorb praise, they redirect it. Leadership involves turning attention from me to the accomplishments of the team. Even when I deserve credit, absorbing all the praise starves the team of the fuel it needs to power the engine.

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Leadership and Pain

Leaders don’t inflict pain, they bear it. 

I strive to live by that axiom. The concept is not unique with me. I think it was true of Jesus. 

It is the opposite of how more than a few successful leaders operate. Intimidation, threats, bluster, and self-serving demands seem more common.

This doesn’t mean allowing people to shirk responsibility or shift blame. This means, when sacrifice is called for and a price must be paid, the leader is first in line. The leader doesn’t crack the whip to get the line moving. The leader leads.

Pain-bearers are followed more than feared.

Monday, April 13, 2015

Don't Stop Believing

That is the most downloaded song written in the 20th century. “Just Stop Believing” would not have been a big seller. Most people need encouragement to keep going. 

Right now, if you are doing anything at all out of obedience to God, there is probably some reason to quit. You likely face pressure to give up. 

Don’t let the critics, the doubters, or the haters distract you from carrying out God’s dream. "Shake it off!" Keep your eyes on the God who holds your destiny. 

Keep building with one hand and keep defending with the other…and never, ever give up.

Crowd versus Team

To fulfill what God wants you to accomplish involves moving from crowd to team.

  • Crowds make noise, teams take action.
  • Crowds are impersonal, teams are intimate.
  • Crowds gather to be entertained, teams gather to achieve.
  • In a crowd you’re a number, on a team you’re a contributor.

Without a team, you will burn out, run out of resources, or fail to contribute to the larger vision. That is why God made the church. We need other as partners, encouragers, suppliers of what we lack. Together we make a difference.

In Christ, we are one. Every part “indispensable,” 1 Corinthians 12:22.

Do Not Resuscitate

I must stop resuscitating sin already declared dead. Too often I find myself trying to keep alive something God sentenced to death. Romans 6:11 urges: “count yourselves dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus. 

In Christ, the power of sin is broken. It can’t condemn or dominate anymore. It only has the control we give it. Your struggle may be with over-reacting, over-indulging, over-spending. You may be overwhelmed with fear, self-pity, worry, bitterness, or lust. You might allow some habit, hunger for approval, root of pride, or secret sin to stay alive.

Count yourself dead to that.  

Thursday, July 3, 2014

5 Observations after Moving to Houston

We arrived here from Pennsylvania in mid-January 2014. I noticed the following:

  1. Rather than simply doing what needs doing, people are always fixin’ to do it.  
  2. On day one, I received a plaque with all the words to “Deep in the Heart of Texas”. It is sung loudly on multiple occasions.
  3. People’s most frequent comment upon hearing I am a new arrival, “You are going to hate it here in August.”
  4. Some of the craziest driving I have ever seen, and that includes countries I visited with no traffic laws.
  5. Passion for football and college alma maters knows no bounds.