| Reluctant Leader

Date archives 2012

Blog / Discipleship

Top 10 Best & Worst of 2012

December 31, 2012

Another year has come and gone. And with all due respect to the ancient Mayans, looks like there will be a 2013. Before we move on the next year, here’s my list of the best and worst of 2012.

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Blog / Leadership

Top 10 Books I Read in 2012

December 27, 2012

I love books, digital books and dead tree books. Here are some of the best I read in 2012.

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Blog / Miscellaneous

My 2012 Top 10 Christmas Movies

December 7, 2012

Since Christmas movies have been playing all week, I thought it was time to update and post my annual Top 10 Must-See Christmas Movie List. Here’s my 2012 list…

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Blog / Leadership

2 Simple Keys to Success

December 2, 2012

When things go wrong, we tend to create all kinds of complex reasons (excuses) for our lack of success. When things go right, the reasons are usually ridiculously simple.

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Blog / Church

Are You Thankful for Things that are Invisible?

November 25, 2012

Thanksgiving was two days ago, but we should still be thankful. Every day. Every hour. Every minute. Every second.

We should thank God:
EVEN IF we are broke,
EVEN IF we are sick,
EVEN IF life is not good,
EVEN IF our prayers are unanswered.

It is easy to thank God for physical things like cars, clothes, houses, and money. But those are here today and gone tomorrow. Even if it is tomorrow and they are gone, we still have much to be thankful for.

Those who go deepest with God tend to thank Him not only for the temporal, but especially for the eternal.

If you take a minute and read Psalm 107, 118, and 135 you will notice that the Psalmist was more thankful for the invisible eternal attributes of God than for God’s temporal physical provision.

Even if everything is going wrong, we should “give thanks to the Lord, FOR HIS LOVE ENDURES FOREVER.” (2Chr 20:21)

Are you thankful for invisible things like faith, hope, and God’s love?


Blog / Leadership

Removing God from Thanksgiving Day

November 22, 2012

When our three sons were small, Deborah and I decided that we would not tolerate an entitlement attitude in our home. Our remedy? Teach our kids to be thankful.

Entitlement cannot coexist with gratitude.

Entitlement says that parents, businesses, siblings, government, church, life, God, and Santa owe me something. And since I am owed, there is no reason to say thanks.

Thankfulness is like kryptonite to entitlement. Kills it on contact.

And that brings us to Thanksgiving Day. After a hundred years of cities and communities declaring their own thanksgiving celebrations, in 1789 President George Washington proclaimed November 26 “as a day of public thanksgiving and prayer to be observed by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many and signal favours of ALMIGHTY GOD.

Notice that the original official Thanksgiving Day was not about being generally thankful, but about specifically thanking ALMIGHTY GOD.

Recently Americans have become obsessed with removing all God references from the conversation. With Thanksgiving we have taken that obsession to an absurd level, not only removing God but also removing the idea of thanks from Thanksgiving Day.

Increasingly we are calling the 4th Thursday of November, Turkey Day. Are we afraid that if we call it Thanksgiving, someone might accidentally thank God?

So now, rather than thanking God once a year for His gracious provision, we eat turkey and watch football.

Blog / Miscellaneous

When All You Have Is Not Enough

November 20, 2012

A mob of hungry people. Seven biscuits. A couple of sardines. That’s not even almost enough food. But that’s all they had. What do you do when all you have is not enough?

The story of Jesus feeding the 4000 offers some answers to what we should do when there is more month than money. Here’s a summary of the story.

Mark 8:1 Large crowd had nothing to eat.

Mark 8:2 Jesus had compassion.

Mark 8:4 Disciples had no clue what to do.

Mark 8:5 After pooling their resources they had a grand total of seven loaves of bread and a few small fish. Not much for 4000 hungry people.

So, what do you do when you don’t have enough, when the words “few” and “small” describe your opportunities and your income? When I don’t have enough, I usually complain or swim in self-pity. But there has to be a better way. Watch Jesus and learn.

Mark 8:6,7 Jesus took the seven loaves and the few small fish and GAVE THANKS, then He GAVE THEM AWAY to the hungry people.

Try THANKFULNESS and GENEROSITY next time your all is not enough. First give thanks to God, then give some of what little you have to someone who has even less. If we learn to give thanks for the too small and the too little, we might just see that small and little multiply until it is more than enough.

Mark 8:8 The people came to Jesus famished and left full, with bags of leftovers.