Thursday, 30 June 2011

I believe in God but I won't forgive

How can we love someone who has caused us so much grief? How can we move past the offense to forgive them and love them? Full of questions and with anger (even hatred) in our heart, bitterness takes hold. Craig Groeschel on page 115 of “The Christian Atheist” shares the following:

“The root of bitterness grows in the soil of hurt that has not been dealt with properly. Unknown to me, a root of bitterness started to grow in my heart. Roots absorb and store, and my heart absorbed and stored hurt, anger, hatred, and thoughts of revenge. Love keeps no wrong, but bitterness keeps detailed accounts. [Emphasis mine]

God’s command for us to love others sincerely just as we love ourselves does not allow room for bitterness and hatred. In love, we are to forgive one another and lift each other up so that we may experience the grace of God:

15See to it that no one misses the grace of God and that no bitter root grows up to cause trouble and defile many. Heb 12:15

Bitterness defiles. Forgiveness liberates and elevates.

Craig Groeschel in chapter 6 shares his battle with unforgiveness and bitterness towards the man who molested his sister and others. There was a lot of anger. There was enmity and hatred. Craig shares the “reluctant” path he traveled to forgiveness:

  1. Recognition – He recognized and was convicted by the Holy Spirit of the destructive force of bitterness in his life.
  2. Prayer – “God, I pray you work in his [the molester's] life.”
  3. Forgiveness – Colossians 3:13 “forgive as the Lord forgave you.”

Forgiveness is not easy. But it is needed. Unforgiveness can destroy us and those around us. Bitterness can grow and defile many.

Who do you need to forgive today? Are you being defiled by a root of bitterness?

On page 122, Craig Groeschel concludes this chapter with the following paragraph:

“We Christian Atheists can rationalize as many excuses as we need to avoid forgiving. We Christians, however, can find in God the sheer strength to battle through the feelings of anger, hatred, and bitterness, and fight our way back to the cross. That’s where Christ forgave us. And that’s where, by faith, we can find the ability to forgive those who’ve wronged us.”

My prayer today is for each one of us to be convicted of any unforgiveness we are holding on to. May God help us to turn our hatred into love, our bitterness into forgiveness…that no one should miss the grace of God.

Forgiven people forgive!

Thursday, 23 June 2011

Quit complaining!!

Tae-ho is a strong willed and determined little boy from South Korea with a permanent smile on his face. Born with 8 severe birth defects, Tae-Ho doesn’t let his disability interfere with living life to the fullest. His story will warm your heart. CLICK HERE

Thursday, 2 June 2011

The bottom line in leadership isn’t how far we advance ourselves but how far we advance the team.

A great article about team....

According to prevailing wisdom, the best businesses create a culture that attracts influencers and develops leaders throughout the organization. Yet, if having an abundance of leaders is such a great thing, what accounts for the enduring popularity of maxims warning against having too many leaders?
“Too many chiefs and not enough Indians.”
“Too many cooks spoil the broth.”
Does bringing together a large number of leaders eventually backfire?

Dream Team or Nightmare?
On July 8th, LeBron James announced his decision to play basketball with the Miami Heat, joining fellow All-Stars Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh. The sports world buzzed with the news, and pundits predicted that the trio would dominate the NBA. Before they ever stepped on a court together, many anointed the supergroup as the greatest team of all-time.
However, the alliance of James, Wade, and Bosh got off to a rocky start. The Heat dropped their season opener to the Boston Celtics on their way to losing eight of their first seventeen games. Later, they suffered the embarrassment of losing to LeBron James’ former team, and one of the worst squads in the league, the Cleveland Cavaliers. As defeats mounted, so did criticism of the team and its players. Analysts labeled the Heat as a collection of whiners and disparaged their uneven performance.

Learning to Serve
Legendary basketball coach John Wooden once referred to the selfishness of players as the greatest challenge facing a coach. In his observation, most players were more concerned with making themselves better than with improving the team. As a result, he discovered that combining the best players seldom resulted in the best team. When crafting a championship lineup, he looked for unselfish players who “showed an eagerness to lose themselves to the group for the goal of the team.”
The Miami Heat nearly succumbed to the selfishness of its superstars, each of whom had been the undisputed leader of his team prior to joining together. The problem for the Heat has not been having too much leadership, but having three players accustomed to excelling at the same role. James, Wade, and Bosh were each the primary scorers on their respective clubs last year. It has taken the trio time, and concerted effort, to learn how best to contribute their considerable talents as a team.

To their credit James, Bosh, and Wade have not sniped at one another following the team’s setbacks, and they have dedicated themselves to unselfishly serving and supporting one another. Instead of competing for the same role, they are learning how to complete one another. Bosh has adjusted to being a rebounder and secondary scoring option, and Wade now generally defers to James on the offensive end of the floor during crunch time of key games. The players’ commitment to winning as a team, as opposed to excelling individually, has reaped dividends. Presently, the Heat are on the cusp of winning the NBA championship and fulfilling the lofty expectations placed on them before the season started.

As the Heat have discovered during the course of their first season together, the bottom line in leadership isn’t how far we advance ourselves but how far we advance the team. Subtracting from others is unintentional. Adding to others takes intentional focus.

This month, consider where you can make adjustments to your performance to better serve the team mates beside you.