I am fragile. When I get out of my rhythms of being with God, I am dangerous. I make unwise decisions; I over-function; I cross boundaries; I fail to be present to those I love; I become anxious; I rush. In fact, the finding of God’s rhythms for my life, and living them, is a matter of life and death – for me and for those I serve. And I am not alone. We are all fragile. This podcast is an invitation to get deeply anchored by deliberately structuring your life in ancient spiritual practices that have stood the test of time. In particular, I focus on the revolutionary practice of Sabbath-keeping and God’s invitation for us to stop and rest for a 24-hour period each week. This inevitably leads to many new insights about God and ourselves. As one person wrote: “Tell me one thing that is productive or efficient about it? The. Read more.
It is hard to be a Christian at Christmas, especially if you are a pastor or leader. These are at least five mistakes that we often make: We skimp on our time with Jesus in our work for Jesus. We speak of profound spiritual realities, but our hearts slowly shrink because we have so much to do. We become perfectionistic. We forget that to be human is to make mistakes. Eugene Peterson says it well: “Perfectionism is a perversion of the Christian way. To impose it on either oneself or another…is decidedly not the way of Jesus.” We do more than God asks. When we do more than God asks, we open the door for all kinds of disorder and chaos. We engage in faulty thinking. Mark Twain once said, “It isn’t what you don’t know that hurts you; it is what you know that isn’t so.” We forget our greatest gift is who. Read more.
The conversation with Geri Scazzero continues in this second segment of The Leader’s Spouse podcast. In this podcast, Geri shares candidly: The hazardous “second hand smoke” experienced by a leader’s spouse Overfunctioning and God’s invitation to quit overfunctioning as a gift of love and maturity for others and yourself Living your one unrepeatable God-given life To read more, see The Emotionally Healthy Woman. Click below to watch the video or the link to listen to the audio file. LISTEN HERE
Pursuing excellence in our leadership is a good thing. Perfectionism is not. Perfectionism, that refusal to accept a standard short of perfection, is the shadow side of excellence – undermining the best of who we are, limiting our ability to love, and damaging our leadership of others. How do I know? I know perfectionism so well in myself. Part of what makes us human is our imperfections and mistakes. Only God is perfect. At times I wonder if the church, in our desire to reach the world for Jesus, has hired a Pharaoh of perfectionism to help us. Sadly, many of us don’t need an external slave driver. We carry our own internal Pharaoh who drives us not to accept flaws and blemishes in our performance. The following are my top 10 signs that God uses to stop me when I fall into the sin of perfectionism: I am anxious – a lot. I. Read more.
Catherine the Great (1729-1796), Russia’s great empress, had a Field Marshall named Grigori Potemkin who organized a tour of southern Russia for her. The tour was planned over 4 years and covered a distance of 1000 miles. To impress the Empress, Potemkin created fake villages where “happy” peasants were transported back and forth. All along the way Catherine gazed out on seemingly happy subjects lining the streets. Thus, the term Potemkin village entered our vocabulary to refer to “an impressive facade, or show, created to hide an undesirable fact or condition.” How much of the Western church, and particularly the church in the United States, is a Potemkin village – with numbers, glitz, and sizzle – but little depth? Truth be told, we have large numbers of “Christ-followers” in our churches who: Live off the spirituality of others; Pray and read Scripture very little; Are enslaved to pornography and romance novels; Have not had. Read more.
To quit overfunctioning is foundational to our leadership. In fact, unless we take up this biblical challenge, it will be nearly impossible to raise up healthy, biblical communities that effectively engage the world with the gospel and deeply transform lives. Overfunctioning can be defined as: doing for others what they can and should do for themselves. This is a key task for every leader that requires discernment, courage, and at times, wise counsel from others. The following four realities motivate us to make this a regular topic for prayerful discernment: Overfunctioning perpetuates immaturity. In Exodus 18, Moses mistakenly believed his self-sacrifice was serving the people. Moses became the largest obstacle, the bottleneck to the people’s growth and maturity. In Numbers 11, the Israelites demanded a rescue from their pain. Moses accepted the role. In doing so, he ensured their continued immature behavior. Overfunctioning prevents us from focusing on God’s unique call for our own. Read more.