Pandora is one of my best wise counselors. During our time in Egypt we were discussing some opportunities to serve with some other ministries. We both agreed the new open doors fit in our focus for this chapter of our life. She shared with me, “Roy God does not do rabbit trails. We need to look for the convergence; how God is fitting these puzzle pieces together.”
That wisdom has set me reflecting before the Lord for his perspective on our life. Where do we sense God’s converging work? I see it as the Lord mixing baking dough. As he dusts the dough with a new ingredient he gently works the dough with his hands until it is consistently worked through.
For us the dough seems to have two primary ingredients; individual people and ideas. In the past month I have spent time with four different leaders in churches and ministries. After our time they would share how helpful the time was and how they had greater clarity for moving forward. YES! The Spirit showed up and used me to deliver some of what they needed. It is fun to deliver God’s mail.
The doors opening for Pandora use her rich background in special education but often branch off in other life on life conversations and burdens to pray for others.
In recent months I have received encouragement and opportunities to do some additional writing projects. Pandora is creating new presentations and also developing tools for consulting. It seems God is letting us share ideas from what we are learning here and overseas with the people who share our journey.
So — Convergence for us is quality time with individuals and capturing, distilling and sharing ideas.
How about you? What does convergence look like for your life? What needs to be pruned or started?
My wife, Pandora, will tell you I live my life by ticking off lists. When I start a project I generate a list of next actions. When I plan a week I generate a list of possible actions. As I go through a day I check off completed actions and scan the list for the next action to engage. This is not all bad but I am learning it is an incomplete picture of how we should live.
I am learning to take the LONG VIEW. I do not mean thinking about what I want to accomplish or where I want to be in 20 years or some other number of years. Being a time traveler into the future in my head may have a place in our reflection time that is a helpful to visit but it is not what I mean.
The LONG VIEW for me is to recognize that the life I really want to live has to be the fruit of a daily process that is part of my life over the long haul. When I check items off my list they are deleted from my screen. They are done, finished, and I can erase them to make room for the next actions. But long view looks like choosing to walk each day holding hands with my best friend, Jesus. The LONG VIEW is to see a listening, engaging, trusting, and loving interaction with Jesus as the center of every day of my life and I would not ever want to complete it or check it off.
When I take the long view on any loving relationship it changes. Marriage, Parenting, Grand-parenting, and Friendships are made vibrant by viewing what is done today to be in relationship as deepening the connection we will enjoy tomorrow and all tomorrows God gives us. I do not want life to just be checking off my devotions or taking my wife out for dinner. Life has a center, a solid stable place to live out our life by being connected to Jesus at its center and constant reality.
How do you live with the LONG VIEW?
Ministry leaders cease to be LIFE GIVING when they see people as problems rather than as God sees them.
Complaining and THANK FILLED, PRAISE SATURATED, FAITH SEEN PRAYERS do not mix together well.
Notice how these leaders describe and pray for the people entrusted to them.
Romans 16:19 ESV For your obedience is known to all, so that I rejoice over you, but I want you to be wise as to what is good and innocent as to what is evil.
2 Corinthians 7:4 ESV I am acting with great boldness toward you; I have great pride in you; I am filled with comfort. In all our affliction, I am overflowing with joy.
Philippians 1:3-7 ESV I thank my God in all my remembrance of you, always in every prayer of mine for you all making my prayer with joy, because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now. And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ. It is right for me to feel this way about you all, because I hold you in my heart, for you are all partakers with me of grace, both in my imprisonment and in the defense and confirmation of the gospel.
1 Thessalonians 2:19-20 ESV For what is our hope or joy or crown of boasting before our Lord Jesus at his coming? Is it not you? For you are our glory and joy.
Philemon 1:7 ESV For I have derived much joy and comfort from your love, my brother, because the hearts of the saints have been refreshed through you.
REFLECT: Would it help for you to paraphrase these biblical words into your expressions of encouragement and prayer this week?
LIFE GIVING LEADERS SEE PEOPLE AS GOD SEES THEM — AND IT LEAKS OUT SO OTHERS SEE AS WELL.