the poor give

How much do you give?

It is interesting that we can notice the big contributions others make but what of the insignificant people that provide for others. The really poor people who give of the little that they have to help those in greater need than themselves. They are the amazing unsung heroes. How much do you give? In the gospel this week we hear of the poor widow who gave all her life savings to the temple treasury, crazy? what do you think?

32 Sunday in ordinary time: First reading 1 Kings 17:10-16, Second reading Hebrews 9:24-28, Gospel Mark 12:38-44.

great people give http://pinterest.com/pin/95983035781258223/ It seems crazy from a security perspective that a poor widow would put all her life savings in to the temple treasury. But with her knowledge that God was present in the temple, her love, her faith, allowed her to do such a crazy thing, and Jesus saw it. Her hunger for God was greater it seemed than her hunger for security, she was spiritually poor. Jesus presented the widow as an honourable person, acting honourably. He compared that act in contrast to the actions of the scribes 'beware of the scribes who like to walk about in long robes, to be greeted obsequiously in the market squares, to take the front seats in the synagogues and the places of honour at banquets; these are the men who swallow the property of widows, while making a show of lengthy prayers.' Mark12:38. It seems the scribes are ego poor, or public opinion poor. They see their future in the opinion of men while the widow sees her future in the opinion of God, she was poor in spirit. But we need to consider how others would view the widow and it is quite different to how Jesus favourably sees her. You see most of us would consider her actions as foolish. To throw away her only security to an invisible force that doesn't always come through with the goods. Hence the scribes dependence on public opinion rather than the opinion of God. But it would be strange if God would want us all to be poor since as Jesus said himself I have come to bring good news to the poor. What I consider to be most important and I could be wrong, if so let me know. But what I consider the most important point of this gospel is the hunger we need to have for God. Spiritual hunger is different to physical hunger, we all experience hunger some more so than others. But spiritual hunger can be hidden by other things like alcohol, drugs, addictions, TV games and other things that take too much of our time and energy. When we are in touch with our hunger for God we are also satisfied. Because by knowing we need God, we then realise God must be there for us. We have all acted out of ego-poverty and public-opinion-poverty before. It is part of our makeup to do so. Because from the earliest times of humanity, positive public opinion was important for survival. Because if a tribe thought poorly of you, then you would likely be kicked out of that tribe and loose all security that the tribe had to offer from enemy tribes. There was no personal superannuation from the beginning, it was only making sure you where in good public opinion. Another really import point of this gospel is to be generous, and never stop being generous. The moment we stop giving to others, is the moment we become arrogant, we start to think we have everything and people should praise us. But as long a we are alive we can continue to give: our time, our support, our attention, our talents. Let us look to the poor widow as an example, she had very little to give, and she gave it all. Because she was certain it would come back again. I think heaven is a place where everyone gives, so start today, start giving.

As you journey on in your life, I promise you that in the end it won’t be what you got but what you gave. So start giving to others and you will benefit.

Corey Payton Life Horizons Coaching
purity, value, dignity

You are not rubbish, you are just dirty

You are not rubbish, you are just dirty.

The dignity of the human person is immense, but we all struggle to really fathom the value of one life let alone ourselves. Christians need to have a better understanding of this than others because as Saint Paul says "we are already the children of God". In life though we come up against many blockages to the sense of our true value and dignity and the value and dignity of others. The hurt and unresolved emotions we hold on to can bury us in judgement and condemning of ourselves and others. In such times Jesus wants to come to us, he is the best person I know for seeing the value of a single life. For it is those who see our value that can help us the most. They are the ones that look past our hurt and self condemnation to see our true value. It is through these people who see our value, we can then let go of the hurt and pain we hold on to because we think we have to find the answer to it. The answer is that we are of immense value and the dirt we collect does not need to cling to us.

Set boundaries to those who dirty you

Once you have a clean clear image of your true value, protect it from those who dirty it. Imagine a speaker on a stage about to invite another person on the stage, but they are totally appalled by this person they are inviting up. They say how draining they are and annoying. Now imagine that person coming on to the stage, what do they look like to you, what would they be wearing? Now imagine the speaker talking about someone who is really gifted and beautiful and just amazing to be with. Imagine that person coming on the stage, what do they look like to you. Notice how easy it is to project our judgement onto the other person. We are hurt by people we meet that see us like that first person, like rubbish. We can then react to the clothes and dirt that person has given us, but if we know our true value, we need not react, we can stand for our dignity. Because the real sadness is that the speaker was unable to comment on one good thing about that first person, that is the real sadness, he couldn't see another's value. Now the first person coming on stage could be in a rage and want to kill that speaker, but that would be his fault because he would be accepting the lie, the projection of the speaker. Stop accepting the lie. Accept your value and say thanks for the introduction but it's sad you don't see my value and hope for improvement. Wash yourselves clean of such people for they have dirty perceptions, dirty eyes. Rather surround yourself with people who love the dignity of others and see with eyes of gratitude.
 

Be pure like Jesus

So Saint Paul invites us who see our true value as children of God and who entertain the hope of heaven to be pure like Jesus is. One of the greatest teaching of Jesus, of his mission and purpose can be found in the beatitudes. "Blessed are the poor in spirit" those hunger for the spirit of unity, of connection, of love of life. "Blessed are the gentle" those that do not react to every injustice with murder. "Blessed are those that mourn" that see the dignit of others and are saddened that many do not see it. "Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for what is right" they work for good. "Blessed are the merciful" they see the value of each person and what is possible for them in their life. "Blessed are the pure in heart" they only live for the good to flourish and never use others as objects to their pleasure. "Blessed are the peace makers" they see there is no wars just opportunities to understand each other and grow together. "Blessed are those who are persecuted for what is right" they are working hard for good to flourish. Jesus really lived these values even to his bloody death. He shows us that no matter what, hold true to your value and dignity, your are loved and you are valuable, you need not find a solution to the dirt that people put on you. Free yourself from it.

Second reading 1 John 3:1-3

Think of the love that the Father has lavished on us, by letting us be called God’s children; and that is what we are. Because the world refused to acknowledge him, therefore it does not acknowledge us. My dear people, we are already the children of God but what we are to be in the future has not yet been revealed; all we know is, that when it is revealed we shall be like him because we shall see him as he really is. Surely everyone who entertains this hope must purify himself, must try to be as pure as Christ.

First reading Apocalypse 7:2-4,9-14

I, John, saw another angel rising where the sun rises, carrying the seal of the living God; he called in a powerful voice to the four angels whose duty was to devastate land and sea, ‘Wait before you do any damage on land or at sea or to the trees, until we have put the seal on the foreheads of the servants of our God.’ Then I heard how many were sealed: a hundred and forty-four thousand, out of all the tribes of Israel. After that I saw a huge number, impossible to count, of people from every nation, race, tribe and language; they were standing in front of the throne and in front of the Lamb, dressed in white robes and holding palms in their hands. They shouted aloud, ‘Victory to our God, who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!’ And all the angels who were standing in a circle round the throne, surrounding the elders and the four animals, prostrated themselves before the throne, and touched the ground with their foreheads, worshipping God with these words, ‘Amen. Praise and glory and wisdom and thanksgiving and honour and power and strength to our God for ever and ever. Amen.’ One of the elders then spoke, and asked me, ‘Do you know who these people are, dressed in white robes, and where they have come from?’ I answered him, ‘You can tell me, my lord.’ Then he said, ‘These are the people who have been through the great persecution, and they have washed their robes white again in the blood of the Lamb.’

Gospel Matthew 5:1-12

Seeing the crowds, Jesus went up the hill. There he sat down and was joined by his disciples. Then he began to speak. This is what he taught them: ‘How happy are the poor in spirit; theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Happy the gentle: they shall have the earth for their heritage. Happy those who mourn: they shall be comforted. Happy those who hunger and thirst for what is right: they shall be satisfied. Happy the merciful: they shall have mercy shown them. Happy the pure in heart: they shall see God. Happy the peacemakers: they shall be called sons of God. Happy those who are persecuted in the cause of right: theirs is the kingdom of heaven. ‘Happy are you when people abuse you and persecute you and speak all kinds of calumny against you on my account. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward will be great in heaven.’

Life is a box of chocolate so choose carefully

30th Sunday in ordinary time

We have all heard the line from the famous movie "forest gump” when Tom Hanks Character says "Life is life a box of chocolate, you never know what you are going to get". But ever since I have studied coaching and researched what successful people do, I have found that successful people actually choose what they want. It might also be the choice that they can't have but stubborn determination keep them going. If your attitude to life is, I will have whatever comes, you could be served a lemon and think life is like a lemon, sour. Imagine going through life thinking that was your only option, lemon or nothing. Well some people do, and you might be one of the Most that do this? Thankfully a lot of people get to the point of "I'm so sick of lemons, there must be something else" then their journey of discovery begins. We hear in the scripture this Sunday that Bartimaeus a blind man is calling out to Jesus: "son of David, Jesus, have pity on me". Blind people in those days were considered to be doomed. Basically if you saw a blind person and you were a good faithful religious you would think to your self, 'that poor man he must have sinned really bad, or his family,to be like that". Then you would walk off thinking you were really blessed and God would be happy with you. Which is why the people around the blind men said be quiet. But bartimaeus was sick of lemons and he knew he deserved better, so he cried all the more. Luckily Jesus didn't think the way of the typical religious of that time because he "heard the cry of the poor" (it is interesting that it says he hears the cry of the poor not just he hears the poor, perhaps it is the poor that think there is another choice to ask for and are determined for something different and so cry out). So Jesus comes along and says "what chocolate do you want?" And Bartimaeus says "the creamy one" and Jesus says okay there you go, your faith got you this. Not there you go I got you this, no your faith got you this. It was the faith of, I'm not going to take lemons even if people think I deserve lemons I deserve some amazing chocolates in my life because I am worth it. I love this story because it is a story of triumph over judgment, freedom over oppression. The oppression is the attitude and belief that I deserve lemons in life both internally and externally from others, the freedom is in the attitude and belief that I deserve better, with also the spiritual aspect that Jesus can help because he is the son of God, of course. So build your faith in getting what you want in life. Whether you are poor or rich you need to work on your faith. Try listing as many reasons as you can why you deserve what you want out of life? Do it and you will be building the muscle of faith, without it you get no where. Most importantly write down the reasons why you deserve Gods love, be bold. Start today 1... 2... 3... 4... .... 500... 501... 502... Keep going Gospel Mark 10:46-52 As Jesus left Jericho with his disciples and a large crowd, Bartimaeus (that is, the son of Timaeus), a blind beggar, was sitting at the side of the road. When he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to shout and to say, ‘Son of David, Jesus, have pity on me.’ And many of them scolded him and told him to keep quiet, but he only shouted all the louder, ‘Son of David, have pity on me.’ Jesus stopped and said, ‘Call him here.’ So they called the blind man. ‘Courage,’ they said ‘get up; he is calling you.’ So throwing off his cloak, he jumped up and went to Jesus. Then Jesus spoke, ‘What do you want me to do for you?’ ‘Rabbuni,’ the blind man said to him ‘Master, let me see again.’ Jesus said to him, ‘Go; your faith has saved you.’ And immediately his sight returned and he followed him along the road.

Service is everything

29th Sunday in ordinary time

 
Service is the hallmark of a great person. This week I look at Jesus' comment to his discoples while presenting a child to them: "if you want to be the greatest you must serve".
 
For some reason we tend to think of great leaders as those that give commands to servants. While the least are those that serve and have to take commands from big bosses and receive little pay. Then, Jesus comes along and says, no, servants are better. Trust Jesus to change the rules. But history proves his words right. Some of the greatest people: ghandi, mother Teresa, all won our hearts because of one strong character strength, their service to the the least and to humanity. It makes sense even in business. The greatest companies create the greatest service to the most amount of people, think of Google, Apple, they all provide so much in service, that is why we give them so much money because they serve our needs. So it seems what Jesus is saying is to be greatest in heaven and even earth you must be someone that serves.
 
So have you been serving?
In your family, when was the last time you washed something for someone, did some work around the house.
In your career, when was the last time you helped someone out in their work
In your relationship, when was the last time you cooked dinner, cleaned the dishes.
In your society, when was the last time you donated money to a worthy cause,
In this lovely world, when was the last time you worked on something to make the world a better place for people now, and to come.
 
I was at a rally on the weekend, a march for babies yet to be born. It felt good to be there and listen to passionate people wanting to serve these babies yet to be born. I love that. I think the sign of service is the hallmark of a great person. They realise that life is a gift and they work hard to protect that gift. Interestingly those that have had abortion are often pushed into it because they are surrounded by friends and family that don't want to help or serve a single parent. Actually it isn't interesting it is sad, sad that a mother would come to that decision and sad she would have to deal with that loss. It's incredible that it has taken so many billions of years for humans to be formed from creation and now we have companies making drugs to kill through abortion. It is a big business abortion and that feeds into IVF. I think it is sad that we live in a time of such great loss. We could blame the companies, schooling system, our culture, parenting, the list goes on. But it really comes down to the individual, are you ready to serve the other. Or even as Jesus says are you ready to offer your life for the other. Jesus offered his life for people in order for us to have relationship with his father the creator of all. That is great service.
 
Did you know that serving is a love language.
If you speak this language people will be so happy with you. So speak it. It is not about being first. It is about being last so all those that you allow to be first can honour your service to them, through money, through significance, through gratitude. Don't we all want that, so you see, you must serve because it means you will become a great person and that will make you to be a person that everyone would like to remember and you are memorable.
Amen to that,

Scripture teaches us not to be attached to things

 
Introduction:
Scripture is like a double edged sword, it cuts deep and reveals hidden truths. Like attachment to a material good more than a spiritual good. This often hides the fact we love comfort more than our growth and good. I find it fascinating that even though the scriptures are so old compared to the "secret" or any other self help book of our time, it still manages to challenge us who read and reflect on it. It is our wisdom, as the first reading states: "I prayed, and understanding was given me". Let us pray that wisdom will be given us and discover, what we need to let go of, that prevents us from being free, just as the rich young man was bound and chained to his riches.
First reading Wisdom 7:7-11I prayed, and understanding was given me; I entreated, and the spirit of Wisdom came to me. I esteemed her more than sceptres and thrones; compared with her, I held riches as nothing. I reckoned no priceless stone to be her peer, for compared with her, all gold is a pinch of sand, and beside her silver ranks as mud. I loved her more than health or beauty, preferred her to the light, since her radiance never sleeps. In her company all good things came to me, at her hands riches not to be numbered.Psalm Psalm 89:12-17Fill us with your love, O Lord, and we will sing for joy! Make us know the shortness of our life that we may gain wisdom of heart. Lord, relent! Is your anger for ever? Show pity to your servants. Fill us with your love, O Lord, and we will sing for joy! In the morning, fill us with your love; we shall exult and rejoice all our days. Give us joy to balance our affliction for the years when we knew misfortune. Fill us with your love, O Lord, and we will sing for joy! Show forth your work to your servants; let your glory shine on their children. Let the favour of the Lord be upon us: give success to the work of our hands. Fill us with your love, O Lord, and we will sing for joy!
Second reading Hebrews 4:12-13The word of God is something alive and active: it cuts like any double-edged sword but more finely: it can slip through the place where the soul is divided from the spirit, or joints from the marrow; it can judge the secret emotions and thoughts. No created thing can hide from him; everything is uncovered and open to the eyes of the one to whom we must give account of ourselves.
Gospel Mark 10:17-30Jesus was setting out on a journey when a man ran up, knelt before him and put this question to him, ‘Good master, what must I do to inherit eternal life?’ Jesus said to him, ‘Why do you call me good? No one is good but God alone. You know the commandments: You must not kill; You must not commit adultery; You must not steal; You must not bring false witness; You must not defraud; Honour your father and mother.’ And he said to him, ‘Master, I have kept all these from my earliest days.’ Jesus looked steadily at him and loved him, and he said, ‘There is one thing you lack. Go and sell everything you own and give the money to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; then come, follow me.’ But his face fell at these words and he went away sad, for he was a man of great wealth. Jesus looked round and said to his disciples, ‘How hard it is for those who have riches to enter the kingdom of God!’ The disciples were astounded by these words, but Jesus insisted, ‘My children,’ he said to them ‘how hard it is to enter the kingdom of God! It is easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.’ They were more astonished than ever. ‘In that case’ they said to one another ‘who can be saved?’ Jesus gazed at them. ‘For men’ he said ‘it is impossible, but not for God: because everything is possible for God.’ Peter took this up. ‘What about us?’ he asked him. ‘We have left everything and followed you.’ Jesus said, ‘I tell you solemnly, there is no one who has left house, brothers, sisters, father, children or land for my sake and for the sake of the gospel who will not be repaid a hundred times over, houses, brothers, sisters, mothers, children and land – not without persecutions – now in this present time and, in the world to come, eternal life.’
Final reflection: Jesus could read this mans heart, he saw his attachment to wealth. But we think then wealth is bad. It can be bad, but are we judging too quickly. Because, maybe it is not the loss of money that concerns the young man, perhaps it is the loss of status that the money gives to him. I think we can all relate to being attached to our status in society. Even Christians find it hard to be Christian in public because of the fear of ridicule and the shame of appearing different. Those who followed Jesus were not considered the 'in crowd', they were the rejects of higher society: sinners, prostitutes, tax collectors, those frowned upon. Yet they were happy, why? Because they felt complete acceptance from Jesus and from his followers, what they were longing for from the world. They realised that they would never find complete acceptance from the world but then they found it from Jesus. Which is why it is harder for rich people, not just rich in wealth but more so rich in worldly acceptance that find it hard to enter the kingdom of relationship with Jesus and his life style of leaving everything.
The young man walked away very sad. His ego had hold of him, perhaps his ego said "you must play the role of a rich man you will be safe then and accepted and belong, this is the way of perfection". But while he was thinking this Jesus was looking at him and loving him, accepting him. But the young man some how did not see this love, his attachment to wealth blinded him so much. He was so identified with his ego "I am rich, I am safe", he turned and walked away, sad, for he was a man of great wealth.
This is hard, hard, hard. We learn to be attached to things that bring us protection, but is it really protecting us? The type of protection that scripture gives us is truth, truth about who we are and where we are going. Riches won't liberate you. At your death your family might even forget you because of your riches, because they would be too busy fighting over it, now is that something worth being attached to?
Action steps:
Consider what is holding you back from relationship with Jesus and his followers?
Do you have strong healthy relationships with people you trust? Or are they only interested in the status, of being in relationship with you?
What do you think of wealthy people, perhaps you hate them, how could you let them go and accept them?
Pray for wisdom on how you can better live your life, free from attachment?
Read more
adam and eve in unity

Know what makes for unity in your relationships

Follow this link for the readings:
Knowing what makes for unity in your relationships:
We hear in the first book of the bible about the creation of man and woman. A very symbolic and engaging account about the creative power of God and the intimate relationship between man and woman and God. In Genesis 2:18-24 we hear about God taking the rib from mans side and forming woman. Man is very pleased about this because he has now a relationship that is unique, empowering, and encouraging. The man exclaimed, as in rejoiced saying “This at last is bone from my bones, and flesh from my flesh!” in other words he has found an equal. Then the scripture informs us “This is why a man leaves his father and mother and joins himself to his wife, and they become one body”.
I think there is so much to reflect on here that is relevant for us in our lives today.
In the beginning Man rejoiced at finding his equal. It is interesting we don’t hear what the woman says in the account. Perhaps she isn’t quite as pleased to see the man because she is presented to him rather than to all creation as the man was. But we assume she is happy to be in relationship and conscious, with all the blessings of the man, as an equal. Equality is and has been a strong endeavour of our time. Some have different notions of equality. Some think equality is about a woman becoming like a man, or man becoming like woman in skill and ability. But in the scripture we hear man leaves his father and mother and joins himself to his wife. In a coaching perspective I see this as man becoming mature, leaving the care of his mother and father to join not become the woman, but join himself to her, and her to him. So the man is still man and the woman still woman, they become one, being masculine and feminine. But this is important. For a man and woman to become one, they must be mature otherwise, the man does not leave his mother and father, he leaves his mother to join another mother in his partner. So first of all, if you feel you want this kind of union in your life, visualise what that looks like to you. Being with the other sex, and still being yourself but also one with the other, a dance of masculinity and femininity. As you see yourself there, enter into the picture and ask yourself do you have all the skills to achieve this or is there something you need to learn or perhaps let go of to flourish in this type of relationship. What do you need to grow in maturity
There is so much to learn to flourish in a relationships. I will list a few. Understanding personality types (DISC, temperments), understanding love languages of your partners, how to resolve conflict, family planning… the list goes on. Perhaps it is time to start researching what is missing in your understanding. You should be learning all the time, because your relationships will determine your happiness in life, it is the greatest gift you will ever receive, look after it and you will be happy, neglect it and you will perish. And if you haven’t already, consider having a spiritual director, or counsellor or life coach to help you forward, this has been my greatest help in my life. Consider contacting me today, I offer a free consultation with no obligations.
We hear in the Gospel reading that Jesus refers to this passage of scripture when talking to the Pharisees who question Jesus about the Law Moses. The Law is the possibility for divorce. Jesus replies by lamenting “it was because you were so unteachable that he wrote this commandment for you.” What does Jesus mean by “unteachable”, perhaps stubborn? perhaps blinded in some way to a new learning? I think in all our relationships we need to be learning. The perspective of the other isn’t always obvious, it is easy to point the finger to blame, to turn a cold shoulder, to withdraw, to avoid, to attack the other or even self in the relationship. Unfortunately even today the law of Moses is needed because we are so unteachable. But Jesus states clearly “two become one” not one become two. Unity is important in every relationship, the family relationship, the friend relationship, the business relationship. Know what makes for unity. One of the best ways of learning restoring relationship upsets, is restorative justice. If you haven’t already learnt the five questions to ask when in conflict, do it, it will save your relationships time and time again. Look into it today, or ask for a personalised coaching program in restorative justice today.
questions for restorative practices
Action step:
Assess the unity of your relationships? is there room for improvement?
is there a pattern of breakup in your relationships, perhaps research restorative justice and start healing relationships.
look into being teachable and learn more about relationships, for example, love languages.
Tell me what you found challenging about these readings? Was this helpful?

Is Leadership for a cause or for a position?

Interesting read, scripture passages for the readings of Sunday 27th September 2015. They have great lessons for leadership. First reading Numbers 11:25-29 The Lord came down in the Cloud. He spoke with Moses, but took some of the spirit that was on him and put it on the seventy elders. When the spirit came on them they prophesied, but not again. Two men had stayed back in the camp; one was called Eldad and the other Medad. The spirit came down on them; though they had not gone to the Tent, their names were enrolled among the rest. These began to prophesy in the camp. The young man ran to tell this to Moses, ‘Look,’ he said ‘Eldad and Medad are prophesying in the camp.’ Then said Joshua the son of Nun, who had served Moses from his youth, ‘My Lord Moses, stop them!’ Moses answered him, ‘Are you jealous on my account? If only the whole people of the Lord were prophets, and the Lord gave his Spirit to them all!’ Second reading James 5:1-6 An answer for the rich. Start crying, weep for the miseries that are coming to you. Your wealth is all rotting, your clothes are all eaten up by moths. All your gold and your silver are corroding away, and the same corrosion will be your own sentence, and eat into your body. It was a burning fire that you stored up as your treasure for the last days. Labourers mowed your fields, and you cheated them – listen to the wages that you kept back, calling out; realise that the cries of the reapers have reached the ears of the Lord of hosts. On earth you have had a life of comfort and luxury; in the time of slaughter you went on eating to your heart’s content. It was you who condemned the innocent and killed them; they offered you no resistance. Gospel Mark 9:38-43,45,47-48 John said to Jesus, ‘Master, we saw a man who is not one of us casting out devils in your name; and because he was not one of us we tried to stop him.’ But Jesus said, ‘You must not stop him: no one who works a miracle in my name is likely to speak evil of me. Anyone who is not against us is for us. ‘If anyone gives you a cup of water to drink just because you belong to Christ, then I tell you solemnly, he will most certainly not lose his reward. ‘But anyone who is an obstacle to bring down one of these little ones who have faith, would be better thrown into the sea with a great millstone round his neck. And if your hand should cause you to sin, cut it off; it is better for you to enter into life crippled, than to have two hands and go to hell, into the fire that cannot be put out. And if your foot should cause you to sin, cut it off; it is better for you to enter into life lame, than to have two feet and be thrown into hell. And if your eye should cause you to sin, tear it out; it is better for you to enter into the kingdom of God with one eye, than to have two eyes and be thrown into hell where their worm does not die nor their fire go out.’ What is a common thread of these readings? Leadership, those being led. The end goal of leadership In the readings of Sunday 27th September 2015 a common thread is when leading people what do we do with those that follow what we believe, but have their own way of doing it. As Jesus said "Anyone who is not against us is for us". Moses encourages those acting from their own beliefs and values and prophesing in the town with out him, without his authority. Both Jesus and Moses seem to have a grand perspective on how things should be, which is bigger than what their disciples think how it should be. The Vision of Moses and Jesus: that all would be following the spirit of God and speaking the word of God and doing good in the world, regardless of what group they belong to. The Vision of disciples of Moses and Jesus: it seems they see the world in order of hierarchy. With Moses and Jesus at head followed by themselves and then others. But hierarchy is limited in a global world. Business's want people passionate for the vision of the business not just people that follow orders. A business with inspired employees are more likely to flourish in a world that keeps changing. So any leader can learn from these readings that it is better to teach people to love the vision of the business and not just their position in the business. What do you think the disciples of Jesus and Moses find hard to accept? Loss of control maybe, a loss of significance? What do Jesus and Moses find easy to accept? The more people for our cause the better. So it shows that the disciples are not yet for the cause but for themselves; they are not yet matured in their journey with Jesus or Moses and their vision. What is your vision for your mission. It needs to be about others not just about you. If it is just about you then you are only trying to meet a need of significance and not contribution. Grow up! The second reading from James who is good at putting pain into those that are comfortable in life. We all have a desire to tell James, hey easy going brother don't guilt trip us too much. But in a coaching perspective, he is really helping us to grow. If we are too comfortable in life, then we are in need of more challenges, and if we are low in challenges then we aren't pushing ourselves enough to grow. The message is strong from both James and Jesus. If you are comfortable in life too comfortable then you aren't helping enough, you aren't giving and growing. Life is about giving and growing. There are no retirement plans on earth or heaven, it is a communion of giving and growing. If you find in life that you are becoming more isolated in your comfort, then it is time to make changes and look at ways you can connect in with those that need you and are doing good in the world. Think of all the people who suffer from you not helping them while you have excess comfort and security. Remember this point also: if ever you feel under attack from someone, ask yourself, do these people have genuine concern for me? Lots of people in the gospel felt under attack by Jesus and they attacked back and in doing so lost an opportunity for growth and receiving care and benefit from Jesus. Action steps: Find a good cause to be a part of, one that will make a difference in the world not just make you different from others. Discover your areas of comfort that need to be challenged. Like they say you are either green and growing or ripe and rotting. You might be green and growing in your business, but ripe and rotting in your family life. Tell me what you found challenging about these readings?
your control

Make sure you get this right, what you can do

What IS in your control and what ISN’T For a person to flourish in their life there needs to be a focus on what they CAN DO. For a person to get stuck, react negatively, fail, procrastinate, remain a victim and be in a state of hopelessness, then they are focusing on what they CANNOT DO. In your life which has been your focus? Read more
give way to potential

Make way for your Potential

“Difficulties in your life do not come to destroy you but to help you realise your hidden potential and power, let difficulties know that you too are difficult” Dr Abdul Kalam. Each of us have so much potential. Do you agree with that statement? Or does it seem like a distant dream? Often seeing and affirming the potential in those closest to us is easier than to our closest self. Read more
know thyself

Know Thyself

Growing up I never put much energy into writing goals or setting outcomes. I was more interested in the journey, what will happen on the way. It was never about reaching my destination it was all about the process. The problem with this pattern of behaviour, is in making important decisions. Like, what kind of career I should take on, what type of person I would like to meet. I remember at one point in my life watching “The Simpsons” while deciding what careers to enrol in university, I was more interested in getting back to the TV. It was like I was waiting for someone else to lead me, someone else who knew me. My wake up call came when after studying two years and working for three years in a job that didn’t suit me and feeling emotionally drained and worn out, I then realised that I put myself here at this destination because I failed to consider one important thing:
To Know Thyself.
It can sound like a very pious saying, to know yourself. After all the Ancient Greeks have been saying it all the time. Socrates refers to the sages of long ago being renowned for their concise words: “All these were enthusiasts, lovers and disciples of the Spartan culture; and you can recognize that character in their wisdom by the short, memorable sayings that fell from each of them they assembled together"[1]. One such saying was “know thyself”.[2] So if the Ancient Greeks have been saying it, I realised it might be important for me to consider. Now to know thyself you need to start by understanding:
  • What your personality type is. There are many personality profile systems Myers briggs is one. I really like the DISC profile and there is a new one to come out called Meta Dynamics which is gaining interest?
  • What your likes are, dislikes, hobbies?
  • What makes you happy, do you like working with people or with things or systems?
  • What are the things you are good at?
  • What do you love about the world?
  • What do you do to relax?
  • What are your values?
  • What are your main needs, security, significance, love and connection, adventure?
  • Also ask others about you: What they consider you’re good at, bad at, could improve?
The list above is the foundation for knowing self, the next stage, is writing down what your dreams are, your purpose your outcomes in life? What standards you are living to? If you make it to this stage you have done fairly well. But it doesn’t stop there. Because to know thyself is an ongoing thing. Did you know that what meaning you give to events and your responses to these events and people, give you lots of information about yourself. It reveals how you interpret your world. To take control of how you interpret your world will change everything.

Things do not change; we change. Henry David Thoreau

Join me on this journey of knowing thyself and learn valuable lessons that will impact your life forever.