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I want to say something about this:

“When I came to you, I did not come with eloquence or human wisdom as I proclaimed to you the testimony about God. For I resolved to know nothing while I was with you except Jesus Christ and him crucified. I came to you in weakness with great fear and trembling. My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit’s power, so that your faith might not rest on human wisdom, but on God’s power.

“We do, however, speak a message of wisdom among the mature, but not the wisdom of this age or of the rulers of this age, who are coming to nothing. No, we declare God’s wisdom, a mystery that has been hidden and that God destined for our glory before time began. None of the rulers of this age understood it, for if they had, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory. However, as it is written:

“’What no eye has seen,
what no ear has heard,
and what no human mind has conceived’
—
the things God has prepared for those who love him—

“these are the things God has revealed to us by his Spirit.

“The Spirit searches all things, even the deep things of God. For who knows a person’s thoughts except their own spirit within them? In the same way no one knows the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God. What we have received is not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, so that we may understand what God has freely given us. This is what we speak, not in words taught us by human wisdom but in words taught by the Spirit, explaining spiritual realities with Spirit-taught words.” ~ 1 Corinthians 2:1-13 (NIV)

I see in this passage four signs or indicators of a mature faith leader:

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“He who overcomes, I will grant to him to sit down with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne. He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.” ~ Revelation 3:21-22

The word translated as “overcome” in the passage above (and all similar passages in Revelation) is the Greek verb “nikao,” which means to conquer, to prevail, to gain the victory.

 

The word implies battle.

Perhaps it’s better to say the word assumes there is a battle, and that you and I are in it. Likewise, the English word “overcome” connotes a sustained and difficult struggle against some kind of resistance ~ be it an obstacle or direct opposition ~ until it is fully conquered.

Whether we describe it in terms of battle or struggle, we all know what it’s like to come up against resistance in our lives. Resistance is that wall you slam into on your way to your dreams coming true. We’ve all been knocked flat by it at one point or another, most likely on multiple occasions.

Resistance is that wall you slam into on your way to your dreams coming true.

One of the basic questions we ask in coaching is this: What does it really take to win your dreams? In my experience, it takes more than wishing it were so, consciously “attracting” it, or passively praying God will hand it to you all wrapped up in a nice pretty bow. It takes rolling up your sleeves, mustering your courage, and jumping into the fray.

There are many things that contribute to being (or becoming) an Overcomer, but as I watch my clients overcome obstacle after obstacle in their lives, I’ve noticed these 7 qualities showing up again and again. How are you at practicing these “overcoming” skills?

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I just got back from spending a week in St. Paul doing some coach training with a terrific group of PhD candidates at Bethel Seminary. My co-leader Eric Bryant and I had an amazing time helping each of these world changers dig deep into their own unique God-given design ~ giftings, passions, skills, values, strengths, and more ~ with a view to uncovering how each could best leverage himself to advance the Kingdom. Amazing, right?! I love this work.

Through our many discussions over the course of the week, I was reminded again how indispensable it is for leaders to develop proficiency in both the HEAD and HEART skills of leadership. Being competent in just one of these is not enough.

What’s the difference between Head and Heart skills? In broad strokes, I mean…

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My friend Eric Bryant has a new project coming out today called A Fruitful Life: Becoming Who You Were Created To Be.

You may know of Eric from his work at Gateway Church in Austin or at Mosaic in Los Angeles or from his previous book Not Like Me: A Field Guide for Influencing a Diverse World .

I asked Eric to tell us about his new project and what makes it unique. Here are some of his thoughts:

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“There is no agony like bearing an untold story inside of you.” ~ Dr. Maya Angelou

What will the message of your life be?

Once you are gone and those who experienced you look back and say “Here’s how he impacted me” or “Here’s how her life changed mine” ~ what will they say?

What do you want them to say?

What is the legacy your life will leave in its wake?

What is the mark you want your life to make on the world? How will you know you are making it?

With the recent passing of Dr. Maya Angelou, I’ve been pondering questions like these lately. She did such an impressive job of knowing her unique purpose, and living it out in a singular and focused way, with all the courage and grace she could muster. Her life has impacted millions. I myself can honestly say I am different because of her life and writings.

So in her honor, I offer you 5 great thoughts on Purpose, and a beautiful video short story that asks us all to consider: If you wrote a final letter to those who come after you, what would it say? What do you want the message of your life to be?

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“He who does not trust enough, will not be trusted.” ~ Lao Tzu

If you’re a leader, I don’t have to tell you that when it comes to leading a team, trust matters…a lot. As Samuel Chand, author of Cracking Your Church’s Culture, has said, “The most powerful features of an organizational culture are trust and respect. With them, almost any problem can be resolved, or at least people learn valuable lessons from difficult experiences, and in the process even learn to trust each other more. But without trust and respect, even the smallest molehill morphs into an Everest.”

So as a leader, how do you build trust on your team? Here are 10 ways I recommend:

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We’re All Wrong

April 28, 2014 — Leave A Comment

“We don’t see things the way they are, we see things the way we are.” ~ The Talmud

When coaching leadership teams, one of the foundational agreements we make going into the work is “Everybody gets to be right…partially.” For any team to become fully empowered and effective, this agreement is essential, because it allows for the basic fact that nobody sees the complete picture of any situation or challenge facing the team, and that every person’s perspective includes some truth that the team needs to hear and integrate into its decision-making.

Beneath the clever verbiage, it’s really just a way of agreeing to be humble with each other…to not assume that you (and you alone) have all the answers and see everything perfectly, or that “they” (that is, whoever sees things differently) are utterly misguided and wrong (and possibly evil) and have nothing of value to teach you at all.

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