The concept of private property comes natural to most children. After “mama” and “dada” one of the first words we learn to wield is “mine” (or to be more precise, “Mine!!”). The sense of ownership develops rather easily. Sharing, on the other hand, is more difficult to learn.
Parents typically begin teaching us how to share by going the authoritarian route, i.e. involuntary sharing. The procedure involves something like bending down, taking a toy out of our hands, and saying something like, “Now Billy, you know you’re supposed to share,” before handing the toy over to our sibling or friend who hopefully is not smirking smugly at us as we look on through tear-filled eyes.
As we get older, however, our parents (hopefully) recognize the need for a more hands-off approach so that we can learn to take on the responsibility of sharing; that is, become voluntary sharers. Good parents know that forced sharing eventually becomes debilitating since it discourages us from assuming personal responsibility. Without the switch in method, the final result is a stunted, immature adult unable to develop healthy, sharing relationships with others (like Baby Huey, both amusing and awkwardly wrong).
Over at the Baptist Press, Jimmy Draper (serving as Interim President of Criswell College) shares eight reasons why Southern Baptists are relevant in the 21st century. Here’s a snippet:
It does us no good — and actually does us harm — to dwell on our size, numerical goals and our heritage. We can’t live in the past. Our heritage is only as meaningful as its most recent application, meaning that all we have done in reaching the nations for Christ does not guarantee us relevance in the future. Being “Great Commission People” and “People of the Book” means daily seeking opportunities to engage the world with the power of the Gospel but in humility and with a heart of service. It is easy for us to point to all that we feel is “wrong” about the SBC. Yes, there are some things that need to be changed but mostly we need to refocus. Every individual Southern Baptist has the ability to decide whether to be part of the problem or part of the solution. The solution is found in engaging the world with the power of the Gospel in humility and service.
At my gym, there is a long racks of dumbbells; all sizes of dumbbells, from tiny ones, that barely fit into your hand at one end to Godzilla size at the other end. One day, when no one was around, I went to the “Godzilla” end of the rack and grabbed the largest dumbbell in the room (the largest dumbbell I had ever seen). It was almost as long as my arm! I grabbed the grip and then glanced around to make sure the room was still empty; then I tried to lift it out of the rack. There was absolutely no motion—no movement—no nothing. I was the only thing moving. So I glance around again, laying hands (both hands) upon the dumbbell, took a deep breath and strained with all my might. It moved, just a bit, out of its place on the rack; but it was obvious that this was a dangerous amount of weight. So, with much effort, I pushed the dumbbell back into place. I was in a full sweat and totally exhausted, so I headed for the showers saying to myself, “Certainly the Godzilla dumbbells were just for show. No one would ever actually use them.” Continue reading →
Recently, I did a post on the seven people waiting when you fall (The Vulture, Vampire, Voyeur, Freak, Fixer, Father, and Friend). If you missed it, you can check it out by clicking here or you can tune in tonight at 6:30pm or 10:30pm to 90.9 KCBI and hear some of my thoughts on the subject. Once the show has aired, you can also listen to it online by clicking here. Be sure to check out some of the other radio shows I’ve done while you are there.
One of the seven individuals I discussed was the friend. This is the person who is loyal and genuinely wants you to succeed in life. You know them by how willing they are to celebrate with you when you’re succeeding, not just by how they help you up when you’ve fallen.
This got me thinking. Are there benefits to being this a friend like this to others? Absolutely. Here are just a few I came up with: Continue reading →
From the Isenheim Altarpiece, painted by Matthias Grunewald
When Jesus arrived as the long-anticipated king of Israel, he was a far cry from the kind of leader that many expected him to be. While the gospel narratives describe him as one with authority and power, it was the ways he used that authority and power that surprised many. Instead of inciting a military revolt against Israel’s oppressors, he travelled around as a homeless man doing things like healing people, feeding them, and washing their feet. In other words, he served people.
Jesus’ leadership in this way is the ultimate example of what many Christian leadership resources have called “servant-leadership.” I believe this is a fitting term. Jesus does indeed provide a model of leadership that finds its modus operandi in service to God and one’s fellow human beings. Christian leadership resources are correct in pointing to service as the functional heart of leadership. However, in my opinion some of these resources, while appropriately citing Jesus as an example to follow, miss some theologically richer dimensions of his servanthood. When understood in the context of the person and work of Jesus, his servanthood has something more profound to offer than just a moral example of what it means to lead as a Christian. Continue reading →