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“Instead of hiding from the world or being overwhelmed by the evil of it, we need to strengthen our spiritual cores and trust in the power of the spirit at work in us.”
~ Christine Caine
"God guarantees that His Word will not return void. He doesn’t guarantee that the return will be immediate. Keep sowing." – Steven Furtick
i posted the above quote on our housegoup fb wall the other day.
funnily i then got this email: from public life trust aka some spam
Claire, how are you growing? Plan ahead to make sure everything flourishes Just like your garden, in life it pays to plan ahead so that everything comes to fruition.
the email is about life insurance or trusts or something like that – i wasn’t overly interested but that first line had caught my eye. it lined up with what our awesome mums group leader had shared this morning (though i wasn’t there, we were talking about it later) from 2 corinthians 9:8
And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work.
isn’t that cool.
God is so good. He is so gracious. Abounding in love and mercy.
and He makes all grace abound to us, at all times, in all seasons, no matter what.
we’ve got to keep sowing.
we’ve got to keep planting.
we’ve got to keep watering.
we’ve got to keep walking forward.
"in the future you will walk out in the fruit of your faithfulness" kim walker smith
there are times when sowing is hard. when ministry is hard. when life is hard. when you’re pressed on all sides.
in those times we so need to know the love and grace and peace of God.
we need His comfort and hope.
we need to know that He is at work, always, and will make ALL grace abound to you, so that in ALL things, at ALL times, you will have ALL you need so you can abound in every good work. He is able to accomplish His Word. He is able to accomplish His promises. He is able to accomplish His call.
so, how are you growing?
love this explanation of strength by Holley Gerth in YOU’RE ALREADY AMAZING and the following questions which can help us indentify our strengths:
“a strength is a personal characteristic that can be used on behalf of God in service to others”
S Service ~ Does it help me serve God and others?
T Time ~ Has it been present throughout much of my life?
R Relationships ~ Do others see this?
E Energy ~ Do I feel energized when I’m living this way?
N Natural ~ Does this come naturally to me most of the time? Or do I know God has intentionally developed this in me even though it doesn’t?
G Glory ~ Does God ultimately get the glory from it?
T Trials ~ Even in hard times, does it usually come through somehow?
H Heart ~ Does this really feel like a core part of who I am?
“For we are God’s own handiwork (His workmanship). We are His masterpiece, created anew in Christ Jesus so we may do the good things He prepared and planed in advance for us to do.” (Ephesians 2:10)
We are created by God for a plan and a purpose – and most importantly wired and gifted for that purpose!
Changing Our Minds About Generation iY
So, how should we lead these young people? May I talk straight? We must master the art of mentoring them and leading them. Let me suggest six shifts we must make:
1. Don’t think CONTROL, think CONNECT.
Often our ambition as a parent or leader is to seize control. Studies show that parents who over-program their child’s schedule often breed kids who rebel as teens. Instead, wise leaders work to connect with them. Why? Because once we connect, we build a bridge of relationship that can bear the weight of truth. We earn our right to influence them.
2. Don’t think INFORM, think INTERPRET.
This is the first generation of kids that don’t need adults to get information. It’s coming at them 24/7. What they need from us is interpretation. Their knowledge has no context. We must help them make sense of all they know as they build a wise and healthy worldview.
3. Don’t think ENTERTAIN, think EQUIP.
I’ve seen parents who are consumed with entertaining their child. I know teachers who approach their classrooms the same way. A better perspective may be: how can I equip my young person for the future? If I give them relevant tools to succeed, they’ll stay engaged. Happiness is a by-product. True satisfaction comes from growth.
4. Don’t think “DO IT FOR THEM” think “HELP THEM DO IT.”
Adults have been committed to giving kids a strong self-esteem for thirty years now. According to the American Psychological Association, healthy and robust self-esteem actually comes from achievement not merely affirmation. We lead for the long-term not the short term. Sure it’s quicker to do it yourself—but it’s better to transfer a skill.
5. Don’t think IMPOSE, think EXPOSE.
When adults become scared a kid is falling behind, we tend to impose a rule or a behavior on them. While mandatory conduct is part of life, if kids feel forced to do it; they usually don’t take ownership of it; it’s your idea not theirs. Why not think “expose” instead of impose. Show them something. Give them an opportunity they can’t pass up.
6. Don’t think PROTECT, think PREPARE.
Adults paranoid about the safety of our kids. Sadly, in our obsession over safety, we’ve failed to prepare them for adulthood. Instead of fearing for them, it’s better to recall your entrance into adulthood and discuss what you learned that helped you succeed. The greatest gift a parent can give their child is the ability to get along without them.
7. Don’t think LECTURE, think LAB.
When young people do wrong, we’re predisposed to lecture them. While it’s a quick way to transmit an idea, it’s not the best way to transform a life. We must create experiences from which we can process truths—like science class—a lab with a lecture. They’re not looking for a sage on the stage with a lecture but a guide on the side with an experience.
Are you interested in developing next generation leaders? Join us for two days in Atlanta this June as Growing Leaders hosts our annual National Leadership Forum. As a member of the Catalyst community, use the code CATALYST for discount registration rates. For more information or to register now, visit nationalleadershipforum.org
*** yesterday we had a fantastic housegroup leaders meeting – thanks pastor peter – and talked about group discussions and some of the core elements that make group discussion teaching work well in the housegroup context.
R Room Engagement
U Uplifting and Honouring
P Presence of God
* create a safe environment
* guard your atmosphere
* have an objective but go with the flow
* ask open questions
* be positive and honouring, even if you have to interrupt and redirect
* make space for God to speak
* value different perspectives
Only let us live up to what we have already attained. Join together in following my example, brothers and sisters, and just as you have us as a model, keep your eyes on those who live as we do. For, as I have often told you before and now tell you again even with tears, many live as enemies of the cross of Christ. Their destiny is destruction, their god is their stomach, and their glory is in their shame. Their mind is set on earthly things. But our citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly await a Saviour from there, the Lord Jesus Christ, who, by the power that enables him to bring everything under his control, will transform our lowly bodies so that they will be like his glorious body. Philippians 3:16-21
Growing in truth is connected to you practicing what you already know
Let us live up to what we’ve already attained
You, however, must teach what is appropriate to sound doctrine. Teach the older men to be temperate, worthy of respect, self-controlled, and sound in faith, in love and in endurance. Likewise, teach the older women to be reverent in the way they live, not to be slanderers or addicted to much wine, but to teach what is good. Then they can urge the younger women to love their husbands and children,to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands, so that no one will malign the word of God. Similarly, encourage the young men to be self-controlled. In everything set them an example by doing what is good. In your teaching show integrity, seriousness and soundness of speech that cannot be condemned, so that those who oppose you may be ashamed because they have nothing bad to say about us. Titus 2:1-8
Follow those who set the example
Our faith although personal is not meant to be private
Find someone who is strong where you are weak
The WHY to give us purpose and perspective to continue forward
Eyes were here on earth, temporary things, leading to destruction
Eyes fixed on Jesus and eternity
Live with eternity in our hearts
All there will be will be the story of our great king and the heroes will be those who followed him
How do you do that in real life?
Now and not yet KINGDOM
Let God chisel me, hard times are gifts to remind us that this isn’t home
Where are your sights set?
Fixed on that day
Towards following wholeheartedly
we all make plans about things that are important to us
How and when
Just do it
What do you look like when you love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength?
Because THAT person, Girlfriend, is who He’s looking for in you.
So, let me ask you this: when you are teeming with love for the Lord your God, who are you right then? What is your passion? What is it that you are bursting to do? That’s probably the stream of your calling. I’m not asking you who you see in front of you when you feel the most love for Jesus because that could be your pastor or your teacher or your worship leader. I’m asking you who is INSIDE OF YOU when you are flooded with the fiery love of Christ? Right there in that passion you’ll start discovering that purpose.
You following Christ will not always look the same as someone else following Christ. Why on earth would He have bothered to form you in your mother’s womb with your own DNA and life experience ahead just to copy what someone else you’re seeing is doing?
Who are you supposed to look like in your calling here on earth and in the way you follow Christ? You’re supposed to look like the version of you that loves Jesus with everything in you.
That’s the real you.
And that’s the road down which you will find what He put you on the planet to do. You don’t have to figure out what to surrender to. Just surrender your heart to Jesus. Every single ounce of it. Ask Him to give you a love for Him that surpasses anything in your human experience. A supernatural capacity. And ask Him for it every day until He does it and then ask Him to do it some more. If you’re a writer, your exploding love for Him will bring it out. If you’re a liberator, you will not be able to keep yourself from seeing to the oppressed. If you’re a teacher, you won’t be able to quit studying except to share what you learned with somebody. If you love Him with your whole heart and that whole heart bursts to sell everything and move to China, Girl, get your passport!
Who would you be if you loved Jesus with your whole heart, soul, mind and strength?
That’s what you’re meant to look like.
by Beth Moore
*** this was just so inspirational and challenging and wonderful that i had to share! go read the whole post WHAT WOULD YOU LOOK LIKE?