Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Dealing with Offenses

Excellent video from Michael Hyatt on dealing with offenses.  This important for leaders and role models like you, men!

He covers four truths:

Offenses are inevitable.
Satan intends offenses for our destruction.
God intends offenses for our good.
Being offended is a choice.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Marching Orders for Men (That's You)

Marching orders for men  (from 1 Cor 16:13-14):

Be on your guard
stand firm in the faith
be courageous
be strong.
Do everything in love.

Friday, March 25, 2011

How's that Bible Reading Plan Going?

Time for a check-in -- how are you doing with your Bible reading plan?  If you dropped the habit, today is the day to restart.  Don't worry about yesterday.  Just restart today.  It's been said of Marines that they get knocked down six times and get up seven.  Be like that!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

This Echo Chamber May Be Dangerous

We have MANY channels and sources for news and commentary now -- let's talk about the good and potentially bad aspects of this.

As a kid you could get your news on TV from three networks (where I grew up, only two, because the antenna wasn't that good).  There were only a couple of options for newspapers in any region.  Radio stations didn't carry a lot of news.  Someone else pretty much dictated what you saw and heard.

With blogs, websites, multiple news channels and their derivatives available on cable and radio, almost every newspaper is online, even automated news aggregators from multiple sources -- there are millions of sources and avenues to get news and commentary, from every conceivable perspective and worldview. 

The plus side of this is that you are limited by what a few people decide is newsworthy, or how they choose to present it.  You can gain access to multiple perspectives on the same events, and get a more complete picture of what's going on...if you choose to.

The downside is that if you aren't diligent, you can spend hours daily in a news stream and never hear or read something that contradicts your preferred perspective. It's been said of several presidents "How did he get elected?  No one I know voted for him!" 

I believe it's important for you, men, because you are leaders in your families, to be well-informed and work with multiple perspectives.  That takes some energy, some discipline.  This situation is only going to get more complicated in the future, so it is important to train your children about these things. 

Ground everything in reliable Scripture, and be discerning, but don't limit your intake to one preferred perspective. 

Saturday, March 19, 2011

We Don't Get to Rebuke the Lord

(This is from a short devotion I led recently. -- Glenn)

21 From that time on Jesus began to explain to his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem and suffer many things at the hands of the elders, the chief priests and the teachers of the law, and that he must be killed and on the third day be raised to life.22 Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him. “Never, Lord!” he said. “This shall never happen to you!”

23 Jesus turned and said to Peter, “Get behind me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to me; you do not have in mind the concerns of God, but merely human concerns.

24 Then Jesus said to his disciples, “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. 25 For whoever wants to save their life[a] will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will find it. 26 What good will it be for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul? Or what can anyone give in exchange for their soul? 27 For the Son of Man is going to come in his Father’s glory with his angels, and then he will reward each person according to what they have done.

28 “Truly I tell you, some who are standing here will not taste death before they see the Son of Man coming in his kingdom.”

Matthew 16:21-28

Observations to apply in our lives:

• We don’t get to rebuke the Lord. We don’t get to say “No, Lord.”

• Geographic orientation – don’t get between me and my destination (Jerusalem)

• Personal orientation – we are to follow Jesus

• Top of mind concerns should be the concerns of God

• May we be small or non-existent stumbling blocks to Jesus!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Future of Business Models

I've spent considerable time in the past two years studying and thinking about the future of business models, managing, product value, gathering communities, and leadership.

I watch a lot of men looking backwards with nostalgia for how it use to be.  Those days are gone, and they aren't coming back again.

It's important to think clearly and courageously about moving forward, and especially about helping our children move forward into the future economic realities.  So I encourage you to watch this short video and start considering these ideas.

Exclusive interview with Seth Godin from GiANT Impact on Vimeo.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Teach Your Girls to Look for Men

It doesn't require more than cursory review of pop culture to conclude that we've moved to celebrating prolonged adolescence.  Consider how many popular music and TV and sports figures are 25-35 years old but acting like irresponsible teenagers. 

I don't have a simple remedy, but here's a starting point, men: teach your your ladies what real men act like, what they say, how they handle themselves, how they take on responsibility -- and then encourage them to skip the goofy, immature, irresponsible "boys" of any chronological age. 

When boys see that young ladies are interested in men, they're much more likely to become men. 

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Christians Actually Have Lower Divorce Rates

This article looks carefully at some data and concludes that -- contrary to what is often said -- American Christians who are serious about their faith actually have a lower divorce rate than secular marriages.

While encouraging, the rate remains too high!

I like what our senior pastor says: "There are only two kinds of marriages: those being worked on, and those that aren't."

Interesting Sign of the Times

Friday, March 11, 2011

Things My Grandfathers Said

My two grandfathers were very different men, and I loved them both dearly. As a boy I treasured time with them, looked up to them, paid attention to what they said – which was often surprising. Here are a few things I heard them say that made a deep impression on me. I won’t distinguish which grandfather said what, because that’s not important to a general audience. But I write in hopes my grandfathers will inspire you, and also to encourage men to be good teaching grandfathers for future generations.

One time I was watching my grandfather pruning rose bushes. I was startled at how much he cut them back! “If you ask the rose bushes, they don’t like to be pruned,” he replied.

“Don’t argue with idiots. They like it too much.” I probably should have followed this advice more frequently in my life.

I could tie my shoelaces as a youngster, but my shoes were often loose enough to come off my feet. My strategy was to keep tying more knots in the laces until I didn’t have any shoelace left to work with. My grandfather said to me, “Glenn, if the first knot isn’t tight, it doesn’t matter how many more knots you tie on top.” I’ve found a lot of ways to apply that insight over the years!

A simple framework for determining what’s wrong: “Don’t do things that make the devil happy.”

Whenever I expressed that I was a little tired of working on a chore, I heard my grandfather’s classic response was classic: “The work isn’t done yet.” Learning about the rhythm of work is more caught than taught.

When I rationalized that he cut wood better because he had a sharper axe: "It's the workman, not the tool."  Even at age 15 I knew he was right. 

Every driver thinks they’re above average.” One of my earliest insights into the fact that self-perception is unreliable.

“You have a belly button, Glenn, so you’re entitled to your opinion. That’s about all you’re entitled to.” Needless to say, my grandfather was not keen on entitlement programs and people who thought they deserved this or that.

Commentary on a local figure who was caught in adultery: “He threw a lot away for a few minutes of fun with a zip at the end. A man does well to keep his pants on.”

One time I asked my grandfather why he shaved in the morning and the evening before bed. He just looked at me, smiled, and continued shaving. (It was several years before I figured this one out!)

Sometimes these men showed ignorance or stereotyping. Here’s an example: “Those foreigners have a different word for everything. If English was good enough for Jesus Christ, it’s good enough for me!” I suspect my grandfather was a little surprised in heaven to find that blue-eyed English-speaking Caucasians were the minority population in heaven. He was convinced that Jesus spoke King James English, and that the apostles switched to the red ink quill when recording his words.

What did you learn from your grandfathers?

Wednesday, March 09, 2011

Colin Powell's 13 Rules of Leadership

Worth pondering, and then discussing with your older children. Make every effort to help them become leaders! (That includes modeling it.)


1. It ain’t as bad as you think. It will look better in the morning.
2. Get mad, then get over it.
3. Avoid having your ego so close to your position that, when your position falls, your ego goes with it.
4. It can be done!
5. Be careful what you choose, you may get it.
6. Don’t let adverse facts stand in the way of a good decision.
7. You can’t make someone else’s choices. You shouldn’t let someone else make yours.
8. Check small things.
9. Share credit.
10. Remain calm. Be kind.
11. Have a vision. Be demanding.
12. Don’t take counsel of your fears or naysayers.
13. Perpetual optimism is a force multiplier.

Saturday, March 05, 2011

"Shining Like the Sun"

This is pretty cool! A few thoughts, as a comparison with we as believers:

The power is from the Son, not from us.
The power is focused as there are more of us working in concert and unity.
The power is focused at a close-by focal point. We need to be close to the not-yet believers to have intense effect.

Thursday, March 03, 2011

Who Can Speak Into Your Chest?

Guys, here's an important question: how many men have permission to speak into your chest, and really get to you?

[Go ahead, think about it. I'll wait a moment.]

There's no "right" number, but you need these men. You need them desperately! Cultivate these kinds of relationships. Learn from their experiences. Consider their counsel carefully. You aren't the first person to have faced difficulties.

Take note: these guys don't all have to be alive. There are wonderful books and journals from men of old that can inform and guide and challenge you.

Got a sense of something that needs more attention here? What will you do about that?

Tuesday, March 01, 2011

Lessons from Ben Franklin

I highly recommend this Orrin Woodward article, "Ben Franklin's Passive Income Stream," for three reasons:

1. He describes a little-told aspect of Ben Franklin's success -- franchising printing operations to provide him income and freedom to work on other things.
2. Franklin wasn't lazy, but very disciplined as a young man. This is worth talking about with our children.
3. It inspires thoughts about what you could do with your time if you had passive income? Franklin worked on an amazing array of interests and service. You can do this, too!

By the way, if you're interested in Leadership Development, you can do a lot worse than paying attention to Orrin Woodward.