How will you vote?  

Posted by archie

As a nonprofit religious organization, I understand you are not allowed an opinion or something like that. So, this is in no way an opinion and is only posted by the janitor. Surely, he doesn't have an opinion and would in no way desire to influence anyone on his/her voting intention.
That is the good thing about America. You get to vote anyway you want without reprisal. So as the janitor, I encourage you to vote anyway you want. Enjoy the opportunity to be free. It may not always be that way.
the janitor
- this is the opinion of the janitor and may or may not be the opinion or attitude of anyone else.

An Eternity to Perfect, A Lifetime to Testify and Ten Talents  

Posted by Mike Sharrow in , , , ,

At a recent conference a speaker gave the exhortation to remember that "We have an eternity to perfect the journey of Christ-likeness and growth, but only a lifetime to testify about God to a world of lost people." It was, obviously, a charge to remember the imperative to never forsake the "as you go, therefore, everywhere be telling" of evangelism for a false dichotomy of "discipleship VS evangelism."

It reminds me of the parable Jesus spoke about the 3 people each given a free lump sum to "steward" for later collection, and how they were measured based upon the risk and diligence they applied towards maximizing what they had been given. The prudish individual ultimately reprimanded in the story buried the little money he was given to ensure it didn't depreciate in value...while his peers all risked for the gain of multiplying yields on the principle for the ultimate joy of the rich ruler. The story uses money as an object, but the lesson implied is much broader than finances - it encompasses all the things we are entrusted with to, skills, opportunities, relationships, knowledge, truth, and time.

However, I have spent considerable time over the past few weeks meeting with people who have been coasting in varying degrees of purpose-lessness for YEARS. Whether it's the guy who spent 30+ years working a job he loathed and robbed his joy, the couple whose marriage had been "not terrible" for 90% of their 10 years together (utterly miserable the other 10%), or the person stuck in a rat race of routine that has them tied up in knots but has no idea why they started or where they're going. There's a witty video clip put together by a pastor in TN that is attempting to address this very issue under the caption of "Dream Jobs: what you do matters."

Why do YOU do the things you do? Towards what end, for Whose pleasure, for what reason are you investing your time in...your job? your marriage? your parenting? your friendships? your hobbies? your ministry service? your...?

What values are reflected by your portfolio of time and energy investments? What silent sermon is your life preaching to your kids, spouse, siblings, neighbors, co-workers? Are you going somewhere...on purpose?

The stock market hits a speed bump and all of the inflationary wealth is shattered leaving only real assets with remaining value. The benefactor of the parable returns and eventually calls in the accounts for a reckoning. Crisis hits and suddenly the mustard of our life is tested for what it is. Wise is the person who assesses their investments for value prior to a crash, their situation before a crisis, their trajectory before the wall of destination.

Boldly Going Where...There is Risk  

Posted by Mike Sharrow in , , ,

Yesterday this guy was preaching about the "power of words" and their value to build up and encourage fellow believers. He even addressed the concept of taking "risk" to encounter conflict or get your hands dirty by wading into the water of a situation for the sake of another person. For many of us, the mental picture turned to unpleasant individuals in our lives or situations we know are so messy we'll likely get a headache in the process.

Then, this morning a CNN report briefly mentions a South African lady who voluntarily waded into the waters of Afghanistan to help disabled people and was ruthlessly assassinated by the Taliban for proclaiming the Gospel. Martyred in the year 2008 in a region occupied by the world's most powerful and "Christian" nation.

On the scale or risks we can take, I think we should remember that 98% of us will never truly experience the cost of discipleship, price of following and depth of risk a majority frontier Christians have for centuries.

Let us therefore....Go.

OODA Loops, Fierce Talks, True North and the Universal of Change  

Posted by Mike Sharrow in , , , ,

Thursday, October 16th was a unique day - Grace Point pioneered into a new space of impact events with the hosting of a National Boss Day Luncheon (aka "Boss's Day"). 2 great guest speakers made up the faculty for this moderated affair, complimented by a superb lunch nicely catered with Hilton supervision.

Do you have milk with your OODA Loops? Does your workplace or team setting have a value of embracing fierce conversations about truth? Have you decided your non-negotiables and true north from which to face uncertainty? Do you have any clue what I'm talking about?

If not, you can check out a unique discussion thread making a splash at the Change Leadership Forum.

You can view pictures from the event at this depot of pictures.

Careful What You Ask For  

Posted by Mike Sharrow

In the Gospels there is this funny little statement that has always struck me "and they stopped asking him anymore questions, for they feared what He would say." Wow. How revealing - when the fear of truth kills the very quest for answers. How depressing...mainly because it's a human condition that we all reflect in varying degrees. We know not to pray for patience, because that will invite patience-growing experiences. What else do we fear to ask? Be careful what you might wreck your life!

Have you ever asked for God to give you "His eyes" for the world? Brace yourself for the answer!

Have you ever asked God to do with you as He wills? Brace yourself.
Do you challenge those around you to dare to consider what reckless abandon into the heart and way of God would be like?

Online Resource Center  

Posted by Mike Sharrow

Check out a new online resource for Grace Point leaders - the Grace Point Resource Center. It's an online bookstore managed by Grace Point to provide an evolving listing of recommended reading materials for small groups, leadership development and miscellaneous topics like marriage, spiritual formation, and the like. As more materials get reviewed you can find them at the Resource Center. The bonus part is any purchases made via this Resource Center actually generates credit for Grace Point to purchase future materials - so you are investing in the ministries of GP while reviewing great resource listings.

The link is also found at GPC Group Central under Leader Resources.