Preparation

Ready for Action

by Andy Wood on July 19, 2013

in 100 Words, Executing Your Plan, LV Cycle, Photos

Action 41

They say timing is everything.

Action 11

And it certainly matters. [click to continue…]

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Working Alone(Inspired by and dedicated to a great group of leaders I have had the privilege of working with over the last 12 weeks.)

It was a lonely life, but Jesse’s baby boy made the most of it.  His brothers probably learned the same way he did, but had gone on to other exploits.

David?  He was confined to the idiot patrol.  He was his father’s shepherd.  And it was there – alone with the dumbest animals on the planet – that David learned to be a leader.

He was alone when a lion came and seized a lamb from his flock.  He was alone when a bear did the same.  He was alone when he delivered those sheep from the valley of the shadow of death.  And the passion, courage, and wisdom he gained there – alone – forged pathways of leadership in Israel that were still in place years after his death.

Goliath?  That was just mop-up duty.

It’s true that leadership is on display when everybody else is looking.  It’s also true that leadership is being forged when no one is.  You may feel you’re in a wilderness, stuck making up silly songs to sing to the sheep.  In fact, you may assume that your solitude or lack of position means you’re no leader at all.

Nothing could be further from the truth.  Here are eight ways to influence an entire generation, even when nobody is looking to you as the obvious solution to their leadership needs.  [click to continue…]

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diggingI heard a funny story recently about a lady with certain-colored hair, who was in a desperate financial condition.  The details are a little hazy, but here goes:

She knelt down beside her bed and prayed, “Oh God, please help me win the lottery.  If I don’t win the lottery, they’re coming to cut my power off.”  She didn’t win the lottery, and her power was cut off.  She prayed again to win the lottery to avoid losing her car.  She didn’t win the lottery, and her car was repossessed.  A third time she prayed to win the lottery.  This time, the bank foreclosed on her house.  She prayed again, frustrated and angry.  “If this is how you treat your children, I’ll never pray again.”

About that time, there was a knock at the door.  She opened it to find a stranger.  “I have a message from the Lord,” the stranger said.  “Would you PLEASE buy a ticket”?

We serve a God who is capable of doing “far more abundantly above all we could ever ask or think” (Ephesians 3:30).  But He insists that somehow we get involved in the process.

Two Candidates for a Miracle

This is illustrated in back-to-back stories in 2 Kings 3-4.  Two different people summoned the prophet Elisha.  The first was the king of Israel, whose army was dehydrated and facing sure defeat.  The second was the widow of a prophet, who was facing the loss of her sons to slavery to pay off her creditor.

Elisha advised similar things.  [click to continue…]

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Stage 1:  Allocate your resources.
Stage 2:  Explore the possibilities.
Stage 3:  Follow your passion.

Stage 4: Execute Your Plan

“Okay, people, settle down.  This meeting will now come to order!  You guys in the back, keep a lookout for tax collectors and terrorists.

“We’ve called you out today because we have a new arrival in town.  This young man says he’s come from Persia, from the King’s palace.  Says he’s one of us, but has an important message.  Sir, you have the floor.”

“New governor, you say?  I never knew we had an old one.  No disrespect, sir, but you look a bit young to be a governor.  How much government experience do you have?”

“Okay, so let me get this straight.  You’ve never held public office.  You’ve never been a governor, mayor, or even a public defender.  You’ve never commanded an army or even seen a fight.  Your one job has been to serve up wine to the king.”

“Well, okay, I’m impressed.  It seems as if the Lord’s been opening up some pretty impressive doors.  But again, with all due respect, sir, this dump ain’t Persia.  Heck, we’re not even a city.  And I appreciate the fact that you’ve been doing some crying and praying for us.  But you’re not the first guy to try to rebuild this wall.  We’ve been trying this for 40 years.  So why don’t you scurry on off back to your cushy job?  I’m sure the king’s a bit thirsty by now.”

“Wow.  You’re serious about this, aren’t you?  I’ve never seen anybody stand up to the entrenched politicians like that.

“You really believe, don’t you?  I’ve never seen anybody with that kind of confidence in God, except ole’ Ezra, the priest.

“You’re going to actually do this, aren’t you?  I’ve never seen anybody hold a weapon in one hand, and a building block in another.

“Governor, could you hand me one of those bricks?  I’m in.” [click to continue…]

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Connecting the Dots

by Andy Wood on July 22, 2008

in Enlarging Your Capacity, LV Cycle

Connect the Dots 2Yesterday God played “connect the dots” with me.  He used a series of apparently random or loosely-connected ideas to form a whole – a picture of what He’s up to or what He wants to communicate.  I’d like to share what I learned in the process.  So here are the “dots”:

Be Ready
Tim Challies told an amazing story about a crash landing that took place at the Toronto airport in August 2005 during a horrific storm.  The plane overshot the runway and came to a crashing halt.

Some fifteen to twenty seconds had elapsed from the time the aircraft left the runway. Amazingly, the fuselage was largely intact. But as the plane had crossed Convair Drive, fuel had begun to leak and had immediately caught fire. As the plane came to a halt the fire began to spread and to intensify.

Keep in mind that it had been 27 years since a similar incident had happened in Toronto.

For twenty-seven years the firefighters had trained to deal with a situation like this one. An entire generation of firefighters had come and gone without seeing a single incident. They could almost be excused for being under-prepared, slow to respond, slow to act.

They weren’t.  By the time the tower controller activated the airport’s crash alarm, 26 seconds after the flight left the runway, the firefighters were already in route.  They arrived only 52 seconds after the plain left the runway.

Despite twenty seven years without an incident, those firefighters were ready and they responded well in advance of the parameters dictated by safety regulations. In less than a minute they were on the scene and were assisting the passengers. It took less time for them to get to the crash site than it did for fully half of the passengers to leave it.

Fifty-two seconds!  After not having an incident in 27 years.  The key was training.  They had disciplined, trained, and practiced so much that when the crash occurred, they were ready.

[click to continue…]

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