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    Take the Initiative

    Add means that we have to do something. We are in danger of forgetting that we cannot do what God does, and that God will not do what we can do. We cannot save nor sanctify ourselves— God does that. But God will not give us good habits or character, and He will not force us to walk correctly before Him. We have to do all that ourselves. We must “work out” our “own salvation” which God has worked in us (Philippians 2:12). Add means that we must get into the habit of doing things, and in the initial stages that is difficult. To take the initiative is to make a beginning— to instruct yourself in the way you must go.

    Encouraging Leaders

    A pastor friend told my husband and me that he’s considering leaving the ministry because he feels as if his efforts haven’t resulted in heart change for any of his congregants—that their priorities remained out of step with God’s. After my husband and I prayed for him, he told us that we had encouraged him. Even so, I’m not confident that he’ll remain in fulltime pastoral ministry.

    Leading with Love

    In his book Spiritual Leadership, J. Oswald Sanders explores the qualities and the importance of tact and diplomacy. “Combining these two words,” Sanders says, “the idea emerges of skill in reconciling opposing viewpoints without giving offense and without compromising principle.”

                During Paul’s imprisonment in Rome, he became the spiritual mentor and close friend of a runaway slave named Onesimus, whose owner was Philemon. When Paul wrote to Philemon, a leader of the church in Colossae, asking him to receive Onesimus as a brother in Christ, he exemplified tact and diplomacy. “Although in Christ I could be bold and order you to do…

    His!

    A missionary is someone in whom the Holy Spirit has brought about this realization: “You are not your own” (1 Corinthians 6:19). To say, “I am not my own,” is to have reached a high point in my spiritual stature. The true nature of that life in actual everyday confusion is evidenced by the deliberate giving up of myself to another Person through a sovereign decision, and that Person is Jesus Christ. The Holy Spirit interprets and explains the nature of Jesus to me to make me one with my Lord, not that I might simply become a trophy for His showcase.

    Usefulness or Relationship?

    Jesus Christ is saying here, “Don’t rejoice in your successful service for Me, but rejoice because of your right relationship with Me.” The trap you may fall into in Christian work is to rejoice in successful service— rejoicing in the fact that God has used you. Yet you will never be able to measure fully what God will do through you if you do not have a right-standing relationship with Jesus Christ.

    This Experience Must Come

    It is not wrong for you to depend on your “Elijah” for as long as God gives him to you. But remember that the time will come when he must leave and will no longer be your guide and your leader, because God does not intend for him to stay. Even the thought of that causes you to say, “I cannot continue without my ’Elijah.’ ” Yet God says you must continue.

    John Wooden: They Called Him Coach, Part 3

    Get a fascinating look into the life of legendary Coach John Wooden—his remarkable career and his personal values for successful living. This inspiring biography conveys the importance that Coach Wooden placed on integrity, belief in God, and concern for others. Other Parts of the series: Part 1: John Wooden: They Called Him Coach Part 2: John Wooden: They […]

    John Wooden: They Called Him Coach, Part 2

    Get a fascinating look into the life of legendary Coach John Wooden—his remarkable career and his personal values for successful living. Greatly admired by all who knew him, Coach John Wooden demonstrated what it means to live a Christian life. This inspiring biography conveys the importance that Coach Wooden placed on integrity, belief in God, and […]

    John Wooden: They Called Him Coach, Part 1

    Honored for his legendary success as a coach and greatly admired by all who knew him, John Wooden demonstrated what it means to live a Christian life. Including interviews with his daughter, Nan Wooden, and players he coached at South Bend Central High School, Indiana State University, and UCLA, this captivating biography provides a great […]

    Leading Well

    Pastor and author John Maxwell wrote, “People buy into the leader before they buy into the vision.” In other words, if we don’t believe in the character, wisdom, and vision of a leader, we face the challenge of following someone we don’t trust or respect.

    Ultimate Leadership II

    Based on spiritual principles of leadership and character development, this course five-lesson course offers studies on Setting Boundaries, Identifying Travel Companions, Dealing with Toxic People and more. The Ultimate Leadership course will give you practical skills that will increase your success in every area of life.

    The Ultimate Leadership Series is offered in two separate courses, to take Ultimate Leadership I click here.

    Don’t miss the Ultimate Leadership Workshops with Dr. Cloud & Dr. Townsend (Click here to learn more).

    Ultimate Leadership I

    Based on spiritual principles of leadership and character development, this four-lesson course offers studies on Character and Leadership, Knowing God’s Will, Building Trust and more. The Ultimate Leadership course will give you practical skills that will increase your success in every area of life.

    The Ultimate Leadership Series is offered in two separate courses, to take Ultimate Leadership II click here.

    Don’t miss the Ultimate Leadership Workshops with Dr. Cloud & Dr. Townsend (Click here to learn more).

    A Clam & A Gray-Haired Man

    Ming lived for more than 500 years before her demise in 2006. The quahog (large clam) had been nestled near Iceland when researchers plucked her from the ocean floor. After prying the creature open—ending her existence—they initially thought she was a record-breaking 402 years old. But further research revealed that she began life in 1499 and made it to the ripe old age of 507! Fortunately, scientists learned much from Ming, including data on changing sea temperatures over the last half-millennium.

    teaching lines

    I overheard my 11-year-old son telling his grandmother about one of his classes at school. “On our first day of Studio Art,” he said, “our teacher told us to draw self-portraits. Mine was bad. Everyone’s was bad. The next day she taught us how to use lines, and everyone’s self-portraits improved.”