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Thursday, September 25, 2003

No gods? 

As I was reviewing the Big Ten, I noticed something that made me stop and take a second look.

"Thou shall have no other gods before me."

Did you see that? It says "other."

What does that mean?

I have always been taught that I was to clear the plate of my life of "other" gods. The gods of self, materialism, and "idols" of life and pleasure. Yet, the command does not focus on removal. It is a command of order; a command of priority.

So, can I keep all the other gods as long as I keep Yahweh number one?

God help me keep your commands...

Friday, September 19, 2003

Have you found God yet? 

What if when the veil of the Temple was torn from top to bottom at Jesus' death the event was more about God being let into the world than us being given the opportunity to approach Him.

What if our responsibility is to find God in the world and make some observations and introduction? What if our main responsibility is not to take God into the world? (As if I carry a little container with a whole bunch of God wopin' in it.)

I wonder what we would find?

God may I find you...wherever you are.

Friday, September 12, 2003

Leading with Presence 

I swear to you I will not read another book based on the leadership style of Jesus.

Why not?

For several reasons. Let’s unpack just one that confuses me.

There are at least two times where Jesus has an opportunity to lead an anxious group forward and he runs.

First, Jesus is describing the competencies of a good shepherd and he says something like “If it were me, I would leave the 99 in the desert to find the one who has lost its way.” That doesn’t sound like a great leader. I’ve never read any book that describes a leader who leaves entire group for one rebellious soul. That just doesn’t sound like “getting the right people on the bus” mentality.

In another place, Jesus is talking to a group who are in their hour of need. And, again He runs. “I must leave you. I can not stay. But, don’t worry someone else is coming.” I haven’t seen a leadership model like this in the literature I’m reading.

It seems to me that a leader is to lead by presence more than being present. To build a movement based on being present will surely die. To lead a movement on presence requires one to leave.

So, maybe the question is “Will whatever you are leading continue to move forward if you leave?”

God you left the kingdom in some messy hands. Please let me be as wise.

Tuesday, September 02, 2003

Can I get a rain check? 

I started the day excited about an opportunity. I was asked to caddie for a friend who was trying to qualify for a senior tour event. Golf is one of my vises. I was looking forward to this as much as he was.

The problem: rain.

My friend is from southern California. He’s not use to the unpredictable weather we experience in the Midwest.

Rain!

What happened? I prayed really hard that this would be a great experience for the both of us. I pleaded with God that he would “fix” the weather so it was not too hot or too cold—just right please. How could God be so unkind? My friend spent a lot of money and time off work to be in the Midwest for this event. Doesn’t He care?

On ESPN radio I heard one of the baseball players thank God for blessing him with a hit that escaped the reach of the third baseman and won the game. Why didn’t God answer the prayers of the third baseman? Sure things worked out for the hitter but…

Maybe God was trying to teach the third baseman something. You know like Job. Maybe things will work for the best in the end for the fielder, like Job. Or will things work out for him like the family of Job?

What did God do with the prayers of Job’s family?

God you confuse me.

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