Archive for January, 2008

Passive-Aggressive Leadership

January 31, 2008 1 comment

One area of my leadership (and life in general) that I am working to develop is the ability to confront issues with other people head on instead of taking out my frustration and anger in a passive-aggressive way. If you’re not familiar with the concept of being passive-aggressive let me illustrate with some examples…

  • When an employee is not performing and meeting expectations, instead of sitting down and discussing it, you simply schedule him less hours.
  • When a friendship is not going the way you anticipated it to, instead of getting together for coffee and sharing honest feelings, you simply stop calling him.
  • When you don’t think your spouse is holding up their end of the cleaning bargain, instead of talking it through, you simply leave the dirty wine glasses on the counter and silently count the days until they get washed.

As you read the example above you might be tempted to think, “How childish is that behavior?,” and you’d be right. It is childish. It reminds me of what the Apostle Paul wrote in 1 Corninthians 13:11,

“When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I gave up childish ways.”

Becoming a man doesn’t happen just because we get older in years. For me personally becoming a man is about becoming a different kind of person. The kind of person who responds to frustrating situations with levelheadedness, courage and maturity not passive-aggressiveness.

How are you doing? In what areas of your life are you still behaving in childish ways? A great way to find out would be to ask your spouse or a close friend where they see childish tendencies in you. I would also recommend praying and asking Jesus to reveal to you any of the areas in your life where he wants to do a maturing act in you.

Categories: Leadership, Thoughts

Driscoll, Election, My Son, and a Hockey Game

January 31, 2008 Leave a comment

I heard Driscoll give an example demonstrating how the doctrine of election shows God to be a loving Father. While listening to Driscoll I thought of an example from my own life.

A few weeks ago I took my three kids to my little brother’s hockey game. My one year old Andrew loves to run around and explore so while we were at the game it was a constant challenge to watch over him. I wanted him to have fun but I also know the dangers of letting a small child crawl up and down steps, bleachers and railings. More than once I sat Andrew down and told him what I expected from him but he kept getting out of his seat and doing the things that ultimately would wound him.

Andrew knew my expectations but he continued to choose his own way despite the fact that it would bring pain. Sound familiar? More than once I spoke to Andrew and told him to stop, to turn around and to come back to me. That is repentance. I pursued him and called him to repent. But he wouldn’t. Just like God pursues me and I don’t always stop and repent either.

Then, one time when Andrew was running and not looking where he was going, I noticed he was about to fall down a flight of stairs. I ran up behind him, grabbed him by his jacket and yanked him to safety. now, did I violate my child’s free will by yanking him back? Yes I did, but, did I do him harm? No, I saved him. Just like God has reached down and yanked me from certain pain and death because of my sin.

Something I’ll Bet You Didn’t Know About Me

January 31, 2008 1 comment

When I get home from work I like to take off my dress shirt and put on a zip up fleece jacket and my slippers – which either makes me a grandfather or Mr. Rogers!

Categories: Fun

7 Tips for Dating with Integrity

January 30, 2008 Leave a comment

Here are a few tips on how to date with integrity. I’ll be sharing these with a group of high school students on Saturday. These are definitely not all the things I did in high school, nor do they flow with the currents of culture, but they are the type of things I will be looking for in my kid’s dating relationships.

1. Get Right with God

  • All of your relationships need to be based on your relationship with Jesus Christ. He must be your first and greatest love above all others. If you are not pursing Jesus and the live he invites you to, then you shouldn’t be pursing anyone else either.

2. Focus on Friendship First

  • Lasting relationships begin as great friendships. Friendship provides the context for getting to know another person at their core, without all the pretense and pretending that can occur in a dating relationship. Dating relationships should flow naturally out of friendships as you find a man/woman who had a heart and mind like yours.

3. Go in a Group

  • Group activities provide all kinds of opportunity to get to know another person and build a friendship. Groups can also help you to build friendships with people who have similar passions and interests as you. There is nothing you should be doing alone with a person that you couldn’t do in a group.

4. Only be Alone in a Crowd

  • You don’t have to put yourself in a compromising situation to get to know someone more personally. Go for walks, meet at a mall or coffee shop, go with a group and sit next to one another. There is no integrity-driven reason to be isolated with someone from the opposite sex.

5. Ask for Accountability

  • Invite a friend or two into your relationships to help you identify your motives and weaknesses. Good friends help you remove the blinders that your feelings can create so that you can evaluate your relationships more clearly.

6. Be Mindful of Your Motives

  • Before you date you should be able to articulate the reason why you want to date someone exclusively. Why would this be more advantageous than friendship and group activities? When we are honest, many times motives of sexual desire or emotional loneliness drive us to pursue dating, when we really should be pursing Jesus.

7. Be Cautious with Your Commitments

  • Exclusively dating another person binds you to that person and creates commitments between the two of you that can leave lasting bruises should the relationship end. You should be careful what your words and actions are articulate (intentionally and non-intentionally) to the other person. If you are not looking or ready for marriage why would you bind your emotions with another’s.
Categories: Dating

Driscoll Video on Predestination

January 30, 2008 1 comment

A friend of mine who had been riding the Armenian/Calvinist fence recently watched this message and sent me a text message that read, “I am a total calvvy now!” Funny stuff. This is a great presentation on the doctrine of predestination. It is about an hour long.

If you have ever wondered exactly what most Calvinist’s believe about how people are saved you should watch this. It is especially convincing when Driscoll talks about the state humans are in because of sin and our inability to choose God because our sinfulness.

Watch the video
or down below.

The Whiteboard Sessions

January 29, 2008 Leave a comment

It’s official. I have requested the time off and Stephanie has me registered for the Whiteboard Sessions. Now we need to book airplane tickets and a hotel. If you have an frequent flyer miles you want to sell or donate please let me know. I’m pumped for may! Should be awesome. Check out the website for more info.

Categories: Ministry, Vacation

Your Hair Will Grow Back

January 29, 2008 Leave a comment

Tonight while I was telling the kids the story of Samson before bed my mind came to rest on this verse, “22 But the hair of his head began to grow again after it had been shaved.” I didn’t know exactly what the verse said but the thought occurred to me that there must have been some amount of time that passed between when Samson was captured by the Philistines and when he gave his live to destroy the house he was shackled in.

I wondered what that time was like. We read in Judges 16 that when Samson was captured his eyes were gouged out leaving him blind. We also read that the Philistines would have Samson brought before them for some kind of entertainment. It must have been a humiliating time for the once proud man. Not being able to see and not being able to defend himself against such embarrassment could have driven Samson mad. He could have denied God and cursed God for laving him in such a state. But I don’t think he did.

The verse above tells the tale. Over time, what must have seemed like an eternity for the warrior turned blind court jester, Samson’s hair grew. But not only his hair was restored. It is possible that his heart for his God was restored as well.

The chances are good that you have done something to dishonor God. The Bible says that everyone has turned from God and gone his own way at some point. Sometimes the choices we make has very serious consequences that leave us feeling blind, or humiliated, or shackled. Just like Samson. The good news is that because of Jesus death on the cross our hair will grow back. And we can be used by God again.

Categories: Devotions, Writing