Tuesday, August 19, 2008

one new thing: I am not alone

I love to read! If this is the case then why don't I read more? I have been reading occassionally taking forever to finish even the most valuable and best of books. Now I am on a mission!

The following is the list of books I am completing:
  1. New Testament - I am reading through the New Testament and am currently in Romans. I read a chapter each day and then go back and sumarize in writing what I've read each day.
  2. The Power of a Praying Wife by Stormie Omartian (this is a re-read for me)
  3. Leadership from the Inside Out by Kevin Harney

This book comes from a pastor's heart, not a corporate leader. He says, "Learning to live an authentic and examined life demands daily choices that are consistent with God's desires for us." He suggests using the following five tools.

  1. Self-Examination Suggestions: develop patterns and disciplines that lead to health and help you avoid pitfalls in ministry.
  2. I've Got Your Back: because we can't see every part of our lives clearly, we need people who will cover our backs. We need to invite other to warn us when we're in harm's way, when our actions are dangerous.
  3. Doctor's Insights: Wise people get regular medical checkups to catch health problems before they become critical. We need to practice spiritual self examinations.
  4. Network Building: We can't lead in isolation. We are wise to build a network of people who will help us lead in ways that honor God and bless others.
  5. Help From My friends: Harney invited other leaders to share how they create lines of accountability and build networks that strengthen them as they serve Christ and his church.

As I began this book I was astonished at how many of the experiences Harney lists that are identical to periods of my own ministry experience. One of the key ways the enemy discourages us is by convincing us that we are alone, that issues are isolated to our ministry or personal life only. That we can not trust anyone. This is such a deception!

Listen to this heart felt quote from Leadership From the Inside Out.

There are days, weeks, even months that my heartbeat is weak, almost too faint to be heard even by God's spiritual stethoscope. If the truth were known, if people could see inside of me, they would be shocked... I hope that no one will notice I'm one heartbeat from spiritual cardiac arrest.

I am sad there are such unrealistic expectations on our pastor's and staff to be perfect, to never be weary and to sacrifice all their personal time for the ministry. I am excited to learn from this pastor how he has surrounded himself with Godly people. I will write a summary of this book when I finish.

Last week I said I wanted to learn one new thing each Tuesday. I was reading a book technical in nature trying to learn something new, but nothing jumped out at me. I think instead God chose to teach me today that I am NOT alone. I need to embrace and bury this truth deep within my soul to battle the enemies lies!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Girl, of course you are not alone. Because none of the teaching pastors here will leave you alone! Really... thanks for the post. It was a great reminder. Every time I read your stuff I think to myself, "Girl, that's deep!" Glad to be working by your side! - Mark