Todd's Blog

July 6, 2011, 6:18 pm
Filed under: Leadership, Spiritual Formation | Tags: ,

Our backyard neighbors have a beautiful flowering tree in the corner of their fenced yard. I know this because the tree’s branches are covered in amazing, pink blossoms that flow over the top and down the outside of the fence for our enjoyment. As far as I know our neighbors never deliberately chose to have these flowery branches spill over into our view. In fact, I’m quite certain they simply planted a tree for their own pleasure, watered it and nurtured it. They’re probably not aware of how the tree looks from our side of the fence or how we enjoy it every time we look out a back window or spend time in our backyard. One morning as I read my Bible on the patio I looked over at the tree and the words of Jesus came to mind…

A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart...” (Luke 6:45 NIV)

When we take time to nurture our walk with God and cultivate a relationship with Jesus, his grace, truth and joy flow out of us and into a hurting world. We don’t need to force it. Like our neighbor’s tree it just happens. The natural result of a real and vibrant relationship with God is lives being touched by the overflow. Whether you’re a school teacher, nurse, construction worker, cab driver, waiter, etc., if you have a genuine relationship with Christ you have a ministry. If you don’t have that relationship you don’t have a ministry, regardless of any title, ordination papers or religious activity leading you to believe otherwise.

So go ahead and nurture your walk with God. Make it your highest priority. As He works in you He’ll also work through you. Your job is simple…

1) Enjoy Him

2) Let it overflow 

“Ministry blossoms naturally in holy lives” ~ J.I. Packer

(photos are courtesy of my daughter, a ‘budding’ photographer)

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Heads or Tails?
August 12, 2010, 10:05 am
Filed under: Leadership, Spiritual Formation | Tags: , , , ,

Today is the first day of school for my kids. After the typical photo shoot and goodbyes with my daughters I had some time with my son whose classes start later. I decided that breakfast was a great opportunity to discuss some basics of leadership with him. I already see his leadership ability and I want to encourage that gift and channel it in the right direction. During the conversation I asked him to explain the difference between the head and the tail in the animal world. He looked at our dog sprawled across the kitchen floor and said “The tail has a butt under it but the head has a chest under it.” I guess you never know what to expect when asking a 10 year old boy a question. We went on to discuss how the head always determines the direction of the tail and not the other way around. We talked about how everyone is either influencing or being influenced. I prayed with him and asked God to make him a leader and influencer at school this year. I prayed that he would be the head and not the tail.

This is something I feel like God is asking of me lately. Too often I’m influenced by people, circumstances and popular culture. Too often I look for someone to follow or emulate instead of blazing a trail. Too often I act like the tail and not the head. But I know I’m called to more and I’ve been hearing that still small voice speak one simple word.
Are you hearing it, too?
So here’s what I want you to do, God helping you: Take your everyday, ordinary life—your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life—and place it before God as an offering. Embracing what God does for you is the best thing you can do for him. Don’t become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You’ll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize what he wants from you, and quickly respond to it. Unlike the culture around you, always dragging you down to its level of immaturity, God brings the best out of you, develops well-formed maturity in you.

Romans 12:1-2  

The Message