Phil Downer in his book, Eternal Impact, differentiates between the value of success and significance. For success, he likes the definition Chip MacGregor and Bobb Biehl devised, “the feeling you get when you reach your goals.” Phil defines significance as “making a difference in the lives of people over time.” For Downer, the distinction between success and significance is that the former ends with the attainment of goals whereas the latter has a lasting dimension. I’m conflicted with his distinction because the ability to attain significance is a mark of success. But let’s take it deeper to the point Phil is really making—reproduction of what is important is what we ought to seek. To do this requires training.
Reelgood’s vision is “to be the place that people go to when they want to watch any TV show or movie.” What I appreciate about this vision statement is its simplicity. One of the first keys to effectively communicating vision is to keep it simple. If we have a grandiose concept that we want others to embrace it must not be overly wordy, complex or ambiguous.
You could hear them screaming at each other five offices away. Heads poked out to see what was going on—I was afraid words would escalate to blows, but fortunately that did not happen. Don looked like he was going to have a heart attack, his face was beet red and he was shaking. Rich’s jaw was clenched and his palms rolled into fists but with three of us coaxing we managed to get them separated and back into their own offices.
I asked Rich what happened. He said he went into Don’s office to ask how Allie was doing on the project she was working with him. Don told him she was worthless and to get out of his office, he was sick of taking Rich’s broken employees and felt like Rich deliberately was out to make his life miserable. Rich said the way Don spoke penetrated his brain and hit his anger button. He knew Allie had her weak areas but he was proud of her hard work and resented Don’s judgmental attitude. Furthermore he didn’t appreciate the way the older manager always blamed people instead of trying to get along. So instead of finding a response to deescalate the tension, he spoke the first thought that raced across his brain, “Don you are a loser and I’m sick of trying to help you.” Those words brought Don out of his chair and began a two-minute shouting match.
Luke 14:26, 27, 33—If anyone comes to Me and does not hate his own father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters—yes, and even his own life—he cannot be My disciple. Whoever does not bear his own cross and come after Me cannot be My disciple. In the same way, therefore, every one of you who does not say good-bye to all his possessions cannot be My disciple.
Ephesians 4:11-13—And He personally gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, some pastors and teachers, for the training of the saints in the work of ministry, to build up the body of Christ, until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of God's Son, growing into a mature man with a stature measured by Christ's fullness.
Meet Manasseh Wakawa. He is one of the most fruitful men I have ever met and his heart for the Lord is expansive. He is a powerful example of why spiritual trainers are so vital to the Kingdom of God.
Supervisor’s 1stWeek Work Evaluation of Prospective Employees:
· Spends an inordinate amount of time talking but gets almost nothing done.
· He is adept at doing anything but work.
· Has great advice on how to improve the organization and loves to share past accomplishments but her work is sloppy and requires much fixing.
· Worked aggressively for a period but then burn out and quit.
· Requires little supervision and gets the job done superbly.
A nonfiction book that I highly recommend is Hard Faith. You can buy it off Amazon.com or purchase it directly from us. I love Hard Faith because I know the author Dan Berg and I’ve seen firsthand how he successfully overcame incredible pain and adversity with his wife. The only reason Dan is walking well today aside from the ever-present grace of God, is that he stuck to his values. He wore the robe of faith when the world suggested other attire.
Day one: Piles of dirt, stacks of tree limbs and lots of pickup trucks, cars and tractors. Men are standing around drinking coffee and talking. Day two: see day one. Day three: see day one. Day twelve? For the first time I see trenches dug and fresh gravel heaps. For all the men and equipment, it does not seem like much has happened on this city project.
I suppose if I were to go away on an extended trip and return, the differences on that lot I prayer walk past would be significant. I know (by faith) that by the end of summer a beautifully constructed park will occupy what now looks like mere mound shifting.
In Chimpembelle Village, Zambia, Onedy Kalimina’s uncle died. When the Head Man dies, one of his relatives on the mother’s side is chosen to replace him. As it happened, the 22 year-old Kalimina was chosen. He was taken to the village witch doctor who prepared a charm called Chitumya. Then he was asked to kneel down and pray “Chitumya come into me and I come into you.” After praying this, Kalimina took a ceremonial bath and put on an arm band for protection that no one else was ever to see. This occurred in 1990.
David Ole Kereto was born in Narok, Kenya, the Maasai son of a witch doctor. By tradition he was expected to follow in his father’s footsteps. One of the highest honors for a Maasai male is to become a warrior. To achieve warrior status, one must kill a lion or a man. To kill a lion, tribesmen will surround the big cat and agitate it by shouting. One of the men then steps forward making himself a target. He holds a spear in his right hand and a stick sharpened to a point on both ends in the other hand. When the lion attacks it usually lunges for the spear hand. Just as it leaps, the Maasai shifts the stick to his right hand and as the lion opens its mouth he thrusts it between its jaws. David accomplished this at age 15 thereby becoming a Maasai warrior!
While ministering in the town of Kitale, Kenya it became evident that our team was larger than was needed for the church we were serving. Sensing an opportunity, I asked Ombima, our host, if it would be possible for us to travel to Uganda. He agreed that it was doable and so we rented a taxi and five of us traveled the windy, bumpy, one-hour drive. With us was Pastor Charles, who was born in the town of Suam, Uganda, the small border village next to the Suam River that separates the two countries. We asked God to lead us to a key contact in order that we might sow the seeds for future disciple making in Uganda.
Our main objective in Kenya is to establish a team of 40* people committed to becoming disciple makers. In the process of leading prayer walks and speaking to large gatherings of pastors and laymen, eager men and women emerged ready to be trained. The church in Kenya is not lacking for disciples, what it lacks is disciple makers (leaders committed to reproducing disciples).
George Barna is a seasoned pollster and director of the Barna Group. His group’s survey results in 2006 reveal some disturbing trends. Listed below are three of the twelve most significant findings this year.
Exodus 24:9-11-- Then Moses went up with Aaron, Nadab, and Abihu, and 70 of Israel’s elders, and they saw the God of Israel. Beneath His feet was something like a pavement made of sapphirestone, as clear as the sky itself. God did not harmthe Israelite nobles; they saw Him, and they ate and drank.
Spring is a tremendous spiritual illustration. Outside my window buds are bursting. The grass grows at a weekly clip but those green blades are in slow motion compared to the weeds. Winter is over. The great plant race is on and the God Who saw that creation was good is still watching.
If love was a waterfall one would be thoroughly drenched by the Ferraros. In a small town in Illinois, this family radiates what happens when God permeates a household. What strikes me most about them is their commitment to live simply so as to give as generously as possible to support Christians on the frontlines for their faith-men and women who serve in organizations like Gospel For Asia and Voice of Martyrs.
Here’s a nightmare! If we don’t spiritually invest in the generations that follow us who will rise up willing to carry the torch of Christ? A self-centered spiritual body is an embarrassment to the throne of the One who so loved THE WORLD—past, present and future!
Deuteronomy 6:5-7--Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength. These words that I am giving you today are to be in your heart. Repeat them to your children. Talk about them when you sit in your house and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.
2 Corinthians 8:9-- For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ: Though He was rich, for your sake He became poor, so that by His poverty you might become rich.
Rather incredible isn’t it? The Lord of the universe willingly disrobed of the heavenly splendor that was His.