In Deed and In Truth

thoughts from a Christian

No Autographs Please

No Autographs Please

A while back, I remember having a conversation with someone at an event.  Our conversation was going quite well and we were discussing many issues of the ministry.  Mid sentence, he stopped me from talking and asked me if I could take a picture of him and the speaker for the evening, that had just so happened to be within proximity of where we were.  At that moment, our conversation ceased as his conversation with the other person began.

What am I to think?  Obviously what I was saying wasn’t nearly as interesting as what he could be talking about with the other person.  In retrospect, the look on his face as I was speaking made it look like he had mentally checked out and was just looking for an opportunity to ask me to take this famous photograph.

I can’t fault him for his actions.  If you want to talk to somebody, then you want to talk to somebody.  I just hope that I’m never the cause of a cancelled conversation.

Coming in a day and age where there is so much exposure, self made, man made with an ease of publicity, anybody at any time can become popular on many levels.  Want to show your face?  Youtube it is.  Got something to say.  Podcast.  Afraid of exposing your face or voice?  Get a blog.  Anybody, anywhere can come out of nowhere and rise to prominence and fame.  (Daniel’s little horn anyone?)

But just as everybody is going in one direction, hoping for that recognition, I’ve been spending the last few years, trying to stay away from the pull of popularity.  (Even at this moment, this blog is read only by my family and a few friends.  Though this entry may make me seem hypocritical, I assure you, my intent for this blog is not for popularity.  In due time, it will be a vehicle meant for more theological, educational purposes).

As carnal human beings, there are insecurities that lie in wait.  When others begin to feed our insecurities, the more we crave it.  When others shower us with praise and push us toward celebrity status, it’s hard to remain humble.  The enemy takes hold of any opening, and we begin down a slippery slope.

As a Christian, a believer in Jesus Christ, we should all be defined by service.  I work, do the things I do, sacrifice, and toil because I want to serve.  I want to serve because I was bought at a price.  I want to serve because greater love has no man than this, than a man serve (lay down his life for) his friends.  I need to serve… because Christ served me by dying for me.  This act of service shouldn’t be done with attaining worldy rewards in mind.

Other pastors, preachers, teachers, speakers, evangelists, theologians, and clergy leaders may love the attention, crave it, and possibly handle it better than I could.  Kudos to them.  However, let’s not be mistaken.  I’m not saying that ALL attention is bad.  I just don’t want any additional attention that might tempt me to think of myself as anything more than a servant of God.

I’m not walking that path.  Give me the path less travelled by.  Let me walk the road marred by sacrifice and tears.  Let me trod the trail that evidences no sign of celebrity compromise, blinded by the flash of photography.

And let me walk it with Christ leading me.

Picture taken from http://baseballsnatcher.mlblogs.com/paparazzi.jpg

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September 9, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Follow the Leader

follow_the_leader_2_b

I’ve always known that a true, successful leader is not defined by what they accomplish, but by what their followers accomplish.  For more than a decade, I’ve been placed in positions of leadership.  Is there such a thing as a natural born leader?  I’m not sure.  I’m leaning more to the notion that a leader is made, not born.  All I know is that as a leader I’m still learning.  And I’m confident that I’ll still be learning for decades more to come.

There are many leadership hats that I must wear.  As a husband I must lead my wife.  As a father I must lead my daughters.  As a pastor, I must lead my congregation.  As a project manager I must lead my team.  There are many people to lead.

The difficulty comes in how to lead all these different people.

How I lead my wife is different from how I lead my daughters.  How I lead one member of the congregation is different from how I should lead another member.  How I lead one employee is different from another.

Every person is different.  Every person has different buttons, different motivational hot spots, many insecurities, many talents, many strengths, and many different ways that they follow.

They are also detracted from certain types of leaders.  How in the world am I supposed to figure out how each person is to be treated?

One person needs affirmation while another person needs scrutiny.  Another needs structure while yet another needs freedom.  People will all react differently to how I approach them.  I’ve learned that there is no “cookie cutter” leadership.  One leadership style will mesh with one while resent another.

So what must I do?  Observe.  Adapt.  Understand.

Love.

To emulate the greatest leader ever to grace this world with His presence, Jesus Christ based His entire ministry on love.

I can talk to people differently, motivate them differently, criticize them differently, push them differently, educate them differently, instruct them differently, and overall lead each person differently.

But I must love them all the same.

Picture taken from http://www.chromasia.com/galleries/0701052111.php

August 26, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment