While flying back from England last week, I read the book “Heaven is for Real: A Little Boy’s Astounding Story of His Trip to Heaven and Back, by Todd Burpo”. It’s the story of a little boy, Colton, who survives a ruptured appendix – but spends some time in Heaven with Jesus while he’s unconscious. Todd Burpo describes the terrifying time of fear, anger and prayer that surround these events and then shares how the fact that Colton was in heaven and what he experienced was slowly revealed. In the book , they show Colton several pictures of Jesus over time and he always say that something’s wrong with the picture – until they showed him a picture painted by another little girl – Akiane – who also went to heaven. Then Colton shouts – “That’s him”. http://shroudofturin.wordpress.com/2011/02/23/akianes-jesus-heaven-is-for-real-and-the-man-in-the-turin-shroud/
So I went to the link above to see this picture – and found a Jesus with eyes the color of water. I set the picture up as my desktop background and each day I would see Jesus several times. On Monday, I changed my desktop background to a picture of the Sea of Galilee early in the morning. Why? I have mixed feelings and quite frankly, an integrity dilemma:
Would I get “used” to seeing Jesus and it would have less impact? Or will those penetrating eyes continue to speak to me? I found myself quickly moving off my desktop to the work I needed to do – almost taking that picture for granted. I didn’t want to take the risk of “glossing” over Jesus – but I would love to have your thoughts on my decision. Is this really about discipline and integrity?
Would you use this picture for your desktop background?
Today’s guest blogger is Hugh Arney – if you enjoy his thoughts below, you can follow him at https://hugharney.wordpress.com/.
Ok, I am becoming more convinced that in order to be successful, at some point in time you have to ask yourself; is it ok for me to toot my own horn?
For some with really outgoing personalities (I – Influencing), it may not be so difficult but for other personalities (S-Steadiness & C-Conscientious) it could be more challenging.
So if you are a Christian are you allowed to toot your own horn? I must admit, I have wrestled with this but fortunately God is working it out within my soul.
Here a 10 things to reflect on:
- You want people to know that you have a special gift to offer the world.
- You don’t have to pretend, just be authentic.
- All your talents and gifts belong to God – He knows our hearts and He cannot be fooled. When you succeed He gets all the credit – it is for His glory.
- Confident – If we are adding value to others lives then we should do it with excellence and with confidence.
- Serve others and a cause much bigger than yourself.
- Be focused on those that want to hear your message.
- Find out what you do best and do more of it.
- If the Gospel is worth promoting? So what you have to offer is also worth promoting?
- Self-promotion promotes your concern for others from your heart.
- Self-promotion produces passion, which is authentic.
God has called us to be shrewd as snakes and as innocent as doves. Matthew 10:16
We are uniquely and wonderfully made by the King of King and Lord of Lords. There is absolutely nothing anyone can do to take that away from us. To me that is worth celebrating and it has taken me some time to really own that thought.
It is ok to tweet, blog, create a website (coming soon along with other things), facebook, text and whatever else we need to do stay in the mainstream as long as we give all praise and glory to our King. He is worthy!
Question: Some of you are much better at this than others. Please share some insight and words of wisdom? Sharing gives us all confidence.
Marshall Goldsmith is one of the top executive coaches in the country. This list comes from his work- www.marshallgoldsmithlibrary.com – comments in italics are my additions. Which one hits home for you?
- Winning too much – at the expense of others or integrity
- Adding too much value – ask “Is it worth it?”
- Passing judgment – discernment is OK, judgment is about people
- Making destructive comments – sometimes we don’t know the impact of our words
- Starting with “no”, “but”, or “however” – start with “why”, “how”, “tell me more”
- Telling the world how smart we are – any level 5 leaders with humility?
- Speaking when angry – good emotional intelligence keeps this from happening
- Negativity – or “Let me explain why that won’t work” – “how can we make this work?”
- Withholding information – power plays that backfire
- Failing to give proper recognition – plan to over-recognize
- Claiming credit that we don’t deserve – do you use “I” more than “we”?
- Making excuses – they change nothing.
- Clinging to the past – sometimes letting go of what worked then is the hardest
- Playing favorites – everybody has their favorites, it ‘s about fairness
- Not listening- this happens when my to do list dominates
- Failing to express gratitude – gratitude can make everything look better
- Punishing the messenger – look for the source
- Refusing to express regret – we are a forgiving people when others admit mistakes
- Passing the buck – take responsibility for your self and your actions
- An excessive need to be “me” – the best leaders adapt to the people they work with
- Goal obsession to the detriment of the mission – complete – don’t compete
I hesitate to write this blog as I know it will be taken wrong by someone, but here goes. I watched the new coverage this morning of Osama Bin Laden’s death – people climbing light poles, waving flags, dancing in the streets. In a flashback, I saw Muslims dancing in the streets, waving flags, and rejoicing on 9/11. Don’t get me wrong, Osama Bin Laden was brought to justice and paid for his hatred and murder of innocent people. But it saddens me to see Americans rejoicing at the death of a human being, however evil he may have been. I understand their reaction, I just think it moves us one step further away from being a people of compassion.
Osama Bin Laden believed on his death he would go to heaven. My faith and walk with Jesus Christ teach me that his fate will be very different. But my walk with Jesus also teaches me to feel extreme sadness that any human suffers his fate. Charles Spurgeon said it best: “If sinners be damned, at least let them leap to Hell over our dead bodies. And if they perish, let them perish with our arms wrapped about their knees, imploring them to stay. If Hell must be filled, let it be filled in the teeth of our exertions, and let not one go unwarned and unprayed for.” Why do we pray and implore them to stay? Because Jesus taught us to love our neighbor and our enemies. Many brave men and women have fought to keep us safe, to protect our homeland and to save the lives of those on 9/11. They deserve the ability to find satisfaction in the justice served this day. I just pray that satisfaction is tinged with sadness that another human being was lost, truly lost.
I’d love to hear your thoughts on this – please share.