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Our Churches are Broken

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I was riding home from church tonight and I looked over at Brandy and said, “I know this is going to sound stupid, but I think I want to be the pastor of a church.” In a way that only Brandy can answer, she asked “Why?” I knew in my heart that the statement was made in gest, but as I laid out for Brandy my reasons why, it became painfully clear that I may have stumbled upon God’s will. The reality is that our churches are broken, and I think God is calling me to fix them (or it).

The reality is that our churches are broken…

First, our churches today are focused on the weekly sermon and a man (or woman) standing behind a pulpit speaking to a group of people. No one really wants to be there. I can’t remember the last time I heard a truly unique message on a Sunday morning.  Church on Sunday morning is treated like an item on our to do list and not an opportunity to participate in a worship experience.

In addition to the lack of ingenuity in our Sunday worship services, I believe that we have lost the love that Jesus shared in the Gospels.  As much as I’d like to think that we all love each other in our churches, the reality is that the majority of us wear masks and we treat church like a social gathering. The cool kids sit in one section of the church, and the not so cool kids sit in another.

I believe that we have lost the love that Jesus shared in the Gospels.

But more importantly than the previous two reasons, we have forgotten who Jesus was. We have deified Jesus to a level that borders on insanity. Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not questioning the deification of Jesus. I am challenging the lack of attention paid to the humanity of Jesus. I think that we as a body of believers can learn so much from the loneliness of the human Jesus (Mark 14:34), his tiredness (John 4:6), and his anger (Mark 3:5). A recent YouTube video went viral, towards the conclusion of the video the poet asked, “But if Jesus came to your church would they actually let him in?”


Written by theheadcoachmanager

February 12, 2012 at 10:09 pm

Setting Goals for Yourself

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Wow! People really struggle with setting goals.  I am by no means an expert at setting goals but I believe that I have a simple, yet effective method for setting goals.  This method can be done quickly and without having to use a long process.  It can be done in writing, or it can be a quick 5-minute thought process.  Follow the concepts I outline and you will be creating goals that will lead to wins.

First, decide WHAT you want to do.  This is the first step and the most important step.  Visualize what you want to accomplish.  What does the finished product look like?  It can be as simple or as complex as you want it to be.  Write it down, or think it out.  It doesn’t matter.  For example, earlier this year Brandy and I decided to get out of debt.  So the WHAT of our goal is to get out of debt.

Write it down, or think it out. It doesn’t matter.

Next, explain WHY you want do the WHAT.  The WHY is the specific reason that you have set out to accomplish the WHAT.  It is important that the WHY be specific and that it is special to you.  It needs to be specific enough that you can explain your WHY to another person.  It has to be special to you because when you explain the WHY to someone else they have to be able to sense your urgency, passion, and excitement.  So back to my personal example, Brandy and I decided to get out of debt because we want to be able to raise our daughter and future children in a home that will provide them with the things they need and want without being in fear of not having enough money or having to live from paycheck to paycheck.  The WHY of our goal is our family livelihood. 

Then, decide HOW you will accomplish the WHAT.  At this point you are deciding the steps that you will take to accomplish the WHAT.  Are you noticing a trend here?  Everything ties back to the WHAT!  Make sure that your HOW is realistic and that it is something that can be measured.  For example, don’t just say you’re going to read a book.  Write down the name of the book and by when you will read it.  Brandy and I are reading the Total Money Makeover by Dave Ramsey, unfortunately we did not set a specific date that we would finish the book by.  However, when school finishes for both of us we will recommit to finishing the book.  In addition to being realistic and measured, make sure that your HOW is related to things that you like to do and that you are good at.  I like to read, therefore reading the book is something that I will enjoy doing.

Are you noticing a trend here? Everything ties back to the WHAT!

The HOW is closely related to the WHEN.  You will attach a WHEN to every HOW that you create.  This is crucial and will ultimately lead to you being able to accomplish your WHAT.  The WHEN should be realistic and reasonable.  For example, my goal to debt free is within the next 5 years.  It would a terrible idea to make it a WHEN of 30 years from now.  By then I would forget what the goal is.  Also, make sure that your WHEN does not defeat you.  So do not make it so soon that it defeats your momentum.

Finally, assign the WHO to the different parts of your HOW.  You will own a majority of your WHO, but in some instances it may require other people in your life.  God put people in our life to help us through it.  Use your resources and don’t be afraid to ask for help.  My WHO includes Brandy.  The WHO of one of my professional goals includes a direct report, and another individual.  These two men are helping me by teaching me something that I don’t know.

God put people in our life to help us through it.

So simply put, design your goals around the following model: WHAT, WHY, HOW, WHEN, WHO.  The order is also important and is a logical sequence of how our mind processes information.  This model can be used for simple goals, weekly goals, daily goals, long-term goals, personal goals, or professional goals.  I use the model daily when planning out my day.  It is simple and leads to quick victories that lead to momentum.  Who knew setting goals could be so easy?

Written by theheadcoachmanager

March 17, 2011 at 8:43 pm

Have a Humble Confidence

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Those that know me personally would tell you that I do not have a confidence problem.  Those that know me personally would also tell you that I am a humble person.  I am convinced that a successful leader must have a Humble Confidence.

My company does not pay me to be an average Store Manager.  They pay me to be the best Store Manager.  In order for me to be the best Store Manager, I have to believe that I am the best Store Manager.  I have to have confidence in my self and in my ability to do the job.  Yet in the mist of that confidence, I remain humble because I know that others around me are doing their part to help me be successful.  I realize that in order for me to be the best Store Manager I need the help of my leaders, my peers, and my directs.  I also believe that there is a God that has blessed me with so much and that it is because of His gifts that I am able to be successful.  That is how I am able to have a Humble Confidence. 

So how can you develop a Humble Confidence and become a better leader?

Being the best is more than just saying that you are the best.  The confidence in a Humble Confidence comes from working harder than others, working more efficiently than others, and producing superior results compared to others.  This kind of confidence comes from a job well done.   You do not want to become the arrogant jerk that no one likes because he or she spends their time talking about how much better they are and yet, their results are on par with the results of others.  When others see you working hard, more efficiently, and producing superior results then they will help to boost your confidence by recognizing your performance.  Your peers will recognize your contributions, your directs will admire your work, and your leader will help you get promoted.  You will be happier and more confident because you worked to have that level of success.

Here is the secret formula.  When you become the best and others recognize your level of performance, then they will work harder for you; because they want to increase their level of performance to match yours.  Your directs and peers will want to do a better job because you are setting a higher standard.  Your leader will work hard for you because they see you working hard for them.  Your hard work creates an up-down-all around phenomena of superior performance.  That is when you are humbled because you realize that you are merely a piece of the puzzle that led to this success.  When everyone is working together, and when everyone elevates their performance good things happen.  Humble yourself and realize that you are where you are because of what others did, not because of what you did.

A leader that has a Humble Confidence is admired, and respected.  Humility is a good thing on its own, and confidence is good on its own.  When the two come together in a leader’s life good things happen and teams are successful.  Lou Holtz tells the story about when he was the Head Coach at North Carolina State University.  He was asked if he thought he was the best college coach in America, and he responded “No.” He was being humble and did not want to be perceived as arrogant.  What he did not realize at the time was that he was letting his staff down, his players down, and his school down by not having the confidence to say that he was the best.  North Carolina State University was paying Lou Holtz to be the best college coach in America and it was up to him to decide that he was going to be the  best college coach in America and to have the confidence to say it.

Written by theheadcoachmanager

January 24, 2011 at 3:24 pm