Enlarging Your Capacity

Spring tulip fields in Holland, Netherlands

According to the experts in global culture, setting aside specific countries or tribes, you belong to one of 10 primary social groups: Anglo, Germanic, Latin European, African, Eastern European, Middle Eastern, Confucian, Southeast Asian, Latin American, and Nordic.

One in 10 – that alone makes you pretty statistically insignificant.

Broadly speaking, again setting aside the ever-increasing labels for new “communities” springing up, three genders have been formally recognized at a government level somewhere in the world – male, female, and transgender. Factor that into the previous set of distinctions, and move over – now you’re one in 30. [click to continue…]

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Compassion

Most Christians live as if Jesus doesn’t get it.

Sure, He can create the universe and conquer unseen demon hordes.

But apparently He’s clueless about your money, relationships, or dreams.

Forget the fact that He called Himself the “Son of Man” 81 times.

When it comes to really understanding, Jesus appears out of touch at best…

Stupid at worst. [click to continue…]

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man and woman

World changers… Meh.

We’ve turned that into a badly-worn cliché. It seems as though anybody with a Selfie Stick and a cause can be labeled a world changer.

And if your goal is to be famous – to get your 15 minutes of viral – let me just remind you that these days that cuts both ways. Thanks to the wonders of always-on video, social media and instant rushes to judgment, you can go from completely unknown to globally hated within hours. Just ask Walt Palmer or Justine Sacco.

But what if I were to tell you that it’s possible to have global impact – the long-term kind, way past your local address and far past your own lifetime – without being a celebrity or even well-known? What if it were possible to shake the earth with potential without ever holding a microphone or appearing in the media? What if I told you that even when you felt swatted away like a gnat by the elites, you could still make history?

This is for those who are looking for a hero without a stage, press conference, or package to sell. This is for those who may have resigned themselves to obscurity at best, or chronic rejection at worst. This is for the ordinary guy with average intelligence or the woman who has a cause (or calling), but no one to recognize their genius or talent.

I want to introduce you to the first “power couple” in the New Testament. But let me hasten to say that these two never conducted a massive missionary campaign, started a church, wrote a book of the Bible, or even said anything that was written down for future generations. They appear to be walking wallflowers. And yet the most famous Christian of his day said something about them that he never said of anyone else. [click to continue…]

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Dandelion

Because of God’s great faithfulness and love, I enter boldly into His presence today to stand in the gap for you.   I pray that on this day that He has made that He would grant you to be…

Established in hope, and renewed in the expectation that a greater day awaits tomorrow…

Loosened from every limiting fear or false belief[click to continue…]

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Loneliness Concept - 3D

What did rejection look like to you on the school playground?  What about Junior High?  College?

What did rejection look like after you got married, or started a family?  What does it look like today in your workplace or your worship space?

Describing your experience with rejection is like describing an encounter with a snake.  Each experience is a little different, and the beast appears differently in every scene.  But in each case the result leaves a story to tell and an emotional experience to re-live or respond to.

I’ve had my own experiences, of course.  And I’ve seen it played out in countless lives…

Like the 59-year-old woman who said of her then-76-year-old mother, “Just once I wish I could hear my mother say I did something right.”

Or the only-child high school student who was rejected by his friends because he had a helicopter mother before the term was ever invented.  She meddled, and her son, whom she was trying to help and advance, was hated all the more.

Then there was the businessman who was rejected in the business world because he was part of a revolutionary approach to financial services, but was obnoxious about it.

I knew a pastor once who was rejected by the deacons in his church. After years of service, they felt that it was time for a change. So they gave him a deadline and asked him to find somewhere else to go. When he was unable to, they cornered him about resigning, and he turned the rejection tables back on them. Unbeknownst to them, he showed up one Sunday morning with has car packed, he got up at sermon time, explained that he’d been asked to resign, and walked out the door.  Ouch.

It may surprise you to know that some of the most memorable and powerful success stories in history are people whose lives arose from the ashes of rejection.  [click to continue…]

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Weakness on Warning Road Sign.

Tense truth:  Since we all have points of glaring weakness, it is far more efficient to focus on our strengths and partner with others to address our weaknesses.  But sometimes we can’t escape the necessity of addressing those areas of epic incompetence. The key is discerning when to hunker down and deal with it, and when to hand it off to someone else.

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Need some encouragement?  I can help you with that.

Need to find the right words to express something?  I’m your guy.

Need me to remember a meeting or handle a detail I told you I would?  Sure hope I wrote it down.  With a reminder.  In more than one place.  Why?  Because I’m awful – I mean awful – at details.  Just ask some of my students about my “absent minded professor” moments.

Um, better still, don’t. [click to continue…]

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Dramatic religious photo illustration of Easter Sunday Morning reflecting a prayerful moment of silence with a silhoutted person bowing his head, a warm sunrise rises over a foggy lake, and three crosses appear as a vision on a hill, reflected in the water as well.

Oh, how I could sing forever of the amazing display of the way of His heart, His truth in your eyes, and the life of His Spirit, freely given and beautifully displayed in you, who have tasted and seen that He is good!  I pray for you, that He would:

Hold you in the palm of His hand as He brings restoration and healing to the broken places in your life – so that you sing His praises from a heart of peace…

Take you to the mountains of testimony to announce His peace and bring good news of happiness – so that your life declares that our God reigns… [click to continue…]

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Knitting

I don’t knit.

My sister tried to teach me when we were kids.

It wasn’t pretty.

My wife knits.

My daughters too.

Not me.

But you know who else does? [click to continue…]

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(Wisdom on Diversifying Your Income from a Surprising Source)

beautiful little girl plays

I had an interesting coaching conversation last week.  It was about money.  “We have re-budgeted and cut just about everything I know to cut,” he was saying, “and we are barely squeaking by.  How else can I cut my budget when we’ve done all the cutting we know to do?”  I should add that he was trying to avoid cutting his giving to his church.

My reply went something like this:  “A man much wiser than I once told me that he found it important not only to budget his expenditures, but also to budget his income.  Maybe in an effort to balance your budget, you’re looking on the wrong side of the ledger.”

“What does that mean?” he asked.

“Your salary is pretty fixed,” I said, “but your wife has two different sources of income where the results vary.  By seeing just 10 more clients a month (not a week – a month), you will realize the difference you’re looking for.”

His whole brain re-shifted.  Changed his whole perspective.  “I hadn’t thought of that,” he said.

There was a lot of energy in that conversation, and I felt useful.  And while I mentioned to him the sage advice I received from the businessman, what I didn’t mention at the time was that what most changed my perspective was a girl. [click to continue…]

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Two boys go hiking with backpacks on a forest road bright sunny day

Are we there yet?

No.

When are we gonna get there?

Five minutes sooner than the last time you asked.

We’re never gonna get there.

We’ll get there.

When?

Soon enough.  Look outside and see how far we’ve come and how fast we’re moving.

Are we there yet?

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I’ll bet you’ve had a few conversations like that if you’ve ever been on a road trip with kids (or maybe a few adults).  And inevitably, the younger he or she is, the sooner this question pops up:

Why does it have to take so long to get there?

And the only right answer, which they can never seem to grasp at that age, is, because to get there, first you have to go here.  And here is where we are.  But we can still enjoy being here until we get there.

The Christian life has its own version of “There Yet.”  [click to continue…]

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