“Whenever the king consulted them on anything, on books or on life, he found them ten times better than all the magicians and enchanters in His kingdom put together.” Daniel 1:20
Now is a great time to consider our ways and look at how we can improve… this is our time to become ten times better. A recently survey of PennDel Ministry Leaders highlighted goals in three key areas that provide a great springboard for how we can leap forward in our lives and ministries.
Daniel was under a strict diet that helped him to live a healthy life. I had a wake up call five years ago with a pre-diabetic warning and then relapsed last year in the midst of a stressful season. Getting my blood work done helped me to get an accurate picture that moved me into action.
I write this as a fellow traveler on the road to health. I began by establishing a goal weight and a time frame. Cutting back on carbs, riding my bike 5 days a week, and tracking my progress on the My Fitness Pal and Map My Ride apps have helped me to drop over 40 pounds in the past 5 years.
My TARGET WEIGHT is:
GUARD YOUR SABBATH
Rest can renew our soul. It is one of the Ten Commandments: “Remember the Sabbath day
by keeping it holy” (Exodus 20:8).
Yet it is the one that many Christ followers, including those in the ministry, ignore the most.
Set some boundaries with your cell phone and email on your day off and during vacation. If we don’t protect our schedule, no one else will.
My SABBATH DAY is:
Has anyone else experienced what Lewis Grant describes as “Sunset Fatigue?” This is when we come home from work, and those who need our love the most end up getting the leftovers. We detach and zone out. To leap ahead in this area we need to be ambitious about the things that last.
In addition to time with family, we need to prioritize a daily time with God. I was hit hard by this prophetic warning by Banning Liebscher, “If you love the spotlight more than the secret place, you’re in trouble, because it means you care more about pleasing people than pleasing God.”
One of the most important ways we can do this is through prioritizing a daily time with God.
My DEVOTIONAL TIME is
One of my favorite lines when I coach church leadership teams is that “you can’t keep adding without subtracting or delegating.” In order to recalibrate, we need to address our overload.
Several years ago I pulled back from most of my lower tier commitments. God, family, work and serving held the top tiers, but I let go of fantasy football, cable television and multiple volunteer committees that created death by meetings.
Sometimes we can find ourselves in life and ministry perpetuating cycles that are not very effective. What are the things you need to let go of? John Maxwell said, “You have to give up to go up.”
I will SUBTRACT or DELEGATE:
REFUSE TO GO IT ALONE
We were designed to live life in healthy relationships. One of the priorities I have is a group of men I meet with on Thursday morning. We help each other gain Kingdom perspective and encouragement when times are challenging. These men are what Sam Chand defines as PAIN PARTNERS. As you look for friends like this, Sam Chand suggests you can identify this through these qualities:
- Who in your life “gets you” and doesn’t think you’re weak or strange when you wrestle with the complexities of your role?
- Who asks second and third questions to draw you out instead of giving pat answers, simple prescriptions, and easy formulas?
- Who listens to you without feeling compelled to give you advice?
- Who is your safe haven so you can be completely honest and open?
- Who fills your spiritual and emotional gas tank?
My PAIN PARTNER is: