Wednesday, March 17, 2010

In the Storm

Not the easiest of days in hard human life.

He couldn't even eat indoors due to the crowds. His family thought he was crazy & tried to kidnap him. He stated his real family was whoever would do God's will. The Pharisees, now dogging his every step, asserted he was controlled by the Devil. He countered with solid verbal punches in what was a theological prize fight. Later, teaching by the lake, the crowd pressed so that he had to teach seated in a boat on the water. Sun baked for hours. Exhausted. Evening arriving. He ordered the boat to set out for the other side of the lake. Finding the rudder-man's cushion he placed it as a pillow under his head & fell asleep upon the hard planks astern.

Not the easiest of days in a hard human life.

620 feet below sea level & surrounded by ravine-cut mountains the lake, or Sea of Galilee, was notorious for sudden squalls. Most in afternoons. Worse at night. Worse that night. A storm of seismic proportions blew in. Jesus, having lived not the easiest of days in a hard human life, slept still. Waves churning. Spray blowing. Rain falling. Boat sinking. Disciples shouting. His Disciples, some seasoned fishermen, were scared for their lives. They cried out, "Teacher, don't you care if we drown?" They had no where to turn but Jesus. They were right where God wanted them. Jesus was with them in the storm.

The Disciples wanted Jesus to do something for them.

Jesus wanted the Disciples to trust in him.

His presence was all they needed, yet they begged for his action.

We lose some of Jesus' force in translation. "Silence! Be muzzled!," he commands the wind & waves. Immediately the great storm became a megas or "great" calm.

When Jesus powerfully calmed the object of their fear his Disciples became fearful of him.

My greatest fear should not be of my situation. My greatest fear should be of Jesus' great power.

My greatest request should not be for his action. My greatest request should be assurance of Jesus' presence.

Next time I have not the easiest of days in my human life, I should remember: storms WILL come; God is with me; He will not allow me anywhere He can not effect; He will bring me through; He wants me to call on Him; His power changes everything.

(This post references Mark 3:20-4:41.)

Monday, March 15, 2010


A first for this blog: Selected quotes from a single book. Tribes: We Need You to Lead Us by Seth Godin is a leadership book with common sense for all us. Comment to let me know if you like this quote idea or specific quote/s.

A group needs only two things to be a tribe: a shared interest & a way to communicate.

Tribes are about faith—about belief in an idea & in a community.

Leadership isn’t difficult, but you’ve been trained for years to avoid it.

Management is manipulating resources to get a known job done.

Boring ideas don’t spread. Ideas that spread win.

(You have) everything you need to build something far bigger than yourself.

The question isn’t, Is it possible for me to do that? Now the question is, Will I choose to do that?

What people are afraid of isn’t failure. It’s blame. Criticism. We choose not to be remarkable because we’re worried about criticism.

Changing things... requires bravery.

Leadership is scarce because few people are willing to go through the discomfort required to lead.

Groups create vacuums—small pockets where stasis sets in, where nothing is happening. Leaders figure out how to step into those vacuums & create motion.

Leadership is a choice. It is a choice to not do nothing.

Leaders change the status quo.

If religion comprises rules you follow, faith is demonstrated by the actions you take.

The religion gets in the way of the faith. Static gets in the way of motion. Rules get in the way of principle.

Faith is critical to all innovation.

The easiest thing is to react. The second easiest is to respond. But the hardest thing is to initiate.

The status quo is persistent & resistant. It exists because everyone wants it to. Everyone believes that what they’ve got is probably better than the risk & fear that come with change.

Initiative is such a successful tool: because it’s rare.

Too many people get “stuck on stupid”.

Einstein said, “Imagination is more important that knowledge.” You can’t manage without knowledge. You can’t lead without imagination.