Focus on the Process, not the Outcome!

new-lifeI planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the growth. (1 Cor 3:6)

God hasn’t made you responsible for the outcome. That’s his responsibility. But He has made you responsible for the process. Often we work harder at trying to control the outcome rather than just putting the right ingredients into the process. Paul was the initiator of the process by planting and Apollos continued the process by watering what God had initiated through Paul. Planting and watering in all it’s forms made up the process but God was the agent who gave the growth. When you stop trying to control the outcome, you are freed up to give your best to the process and maintain peace along the way. Having to control the outcome is stressful and not in our job description. God says, “Trust me with the outcome by not leaning on your own understanding and focus on the process of what I’ve asked you to do and watch what I do with the outcome.”

What got you here, won’t get you there!

Too many of us think we have what we need to get us where we need to go. I think that the person who is really committed to growth in any area of their lives needs to adopt the posture of a learner. Leaders are learners. The moment you stop learning, you stop leading.

The information you are currently operating out of might be satisfactory for your past but what about for your future? Do you think you’ve arrived or are you still hungry to learn something new? When was the last time you learnt something for the first time? Some of us are so familiar with the ruts of our past that we have become content to live in them. It’s time to get out of the rut.

Change is challenging for all of us but God deals in the business of change. If anyone is in Christ, they are a new creation. The old has gone, the new has come. To go from here to there requires change, adjustment and flexibility. Growth of any kind is a stretch but the rewards are significant. Growth is a process, not an event.

Just because you’ve got the degree, had the experience and bought the T-shirt doesn’t mean you are equipped to travel the next leg of your journey. There are times and places ahead that demand your preparation. Position yourself now for your tomorrow and you will have the peace, strength and faith you need to step into it.

The Oracle!

What Time Is It?

Ecclesiastes 3:1 ‘For everything there is a season and a time for every matter under heaven.’

God has ordained a time and a season for everything. There are seasons in the natural and the spiritual. Each season carries value and purpose. Winter seasons are about what’s happening under the surface, rather than what’s above the surface. Are you as animated and engaged in the winter seasons of life as you are in the summer seasons?

It’s so important to discern and identify the season you’re in. You’ve got to align the right expectations for the season you’re in right now, not the season to come. When I was a ministry intern, my church launched their first leadership conference. I was asked to speak at a breakout session and I wanted to sell some tape recordings (yes, a long time ago) of my sermons but my Youth Pastor at the time commented, ‘This isn’t your season to sell sermon tapes’. I was cut at the time but thank God now. I didn’t know back then, what I know now.

A lot of us are trying to do more than the season we are actually in. Every season carries certain restrictions. Too many of us over-project what we can do in 1 season and under project what we can do in multiple seasons. Paul said, ‘I have learned in whatever situation I’m in to be content. I’ve learned the secret… I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me’ (Phil 4:10-13). It’s your contentment in the season you’re in that determines people’s attraction to you.

There are 2 dimensions of time God has ordained: ‘Chronos’ and ‘Kairos’. Chronos time is the ticking of the clock and the turning of the calendar. Kairos time is the God appointed window of opportunity that you must see and seize if you’re gonna possess what God has for you in the season you find yourself in.

We know God is sovereign over the affairs of men and we often pray for God to sovereignly move on our behalf. He can and does but if God only ever moved sovereignly in our lives and ministries and never involved us in the process of what He’s doing, we would never learn his character, his heart and his ways. God wants a relationship with you, not a robotic automaton. When God includes us in the principle of what he’s doing and how he operates, we learn far more than if he just did it without us.

God is a God of seasons. Every season in God has a purpose and if you can discern the season God has you in, align your expectations accordingly and act in alignment with what God’s revealing to you now, you will not only maximise the present time but be prepared for the season to come.

The Oracle!

Embracing Transitions!

Ecclesiastes 3:1 ‘For everything there is a season and a time for ever matter under heaven.’

Life is filled with times and seasons. Just as there is summer, autumn, winter and spring built into the cycle of seasons in nature, there are spiritual seasons of pruning, preparation and productivity, among others that make up our lives.

One key to being fruitful in life is knowing and embracing the season you are in. A lack of awareness of your current season could result in you trying to make something happen in your present reality that’s more suitable for your future. We need to match our expectation and application to the time and season God has us in.

There are 2 dimensions of time – Chronos and Kairos. Chronos time is the ticking of the clock and the turning of the calendar. Kairos time is the divine window of opportunity that God presents to us to accomplish something powerful and unique. Most of life is lived in Chronos time but we have to be aware of the Kairos moments God is presenting to us, if we’re going to seize the season we are in.

Seasons don’t last forever and so we need to be able to transition into a new season with grace and wisdom. Seasonal transitions can occur through a change of location, job, career, calling, relationship or financial circumstances. But seasonal transitions can also occur in your life in less obvious ways, while you are still in the same job, same location and same circumstances. God works in mysterious ways and is always at work in us, regardless of the circumstances we find ourselves in.

Embracing transitions in life effectively requires lots of prayer, God’s grace, input from wise counsel, paying attention to the sign posts along the way and not holding onto anything so tightly that we actually have no room for the new thing God wants to do in us and through us. What season are you in? Are you in the middle of a transition? Gods with you and will instruct you in the way you should go!

Grace!

Boundaries around the will of God!

Colossians 3:15 says “Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts.”

One of the boundaries God has given to us in our lives is PEACE! Peace is our umpire in the game of life. Peace lets us know when we are in danger of falling off the edge and when we have hit a home run.

Using peace as an umpire in our life makes perfect sense when we consider that the foundation of our relationship with God is peace and rest. Christians should be the most peaceful people on planet earth because we are ultimately connected to the Prince of peace. Peace, therefore, should be a byproduct of our lives. Peace empowers our sensitivity, it enables us to wait patiently and listen.

We can mature to a place in God where it is impossible to worry. When we rest in Him completely, we frustrate the enemy. The kingdom of darkness cannot find us when we are in our secret place of rest in God. We need to learn how to allow peace to be our umpire. A referee only stops a game when things get out of hand or when a rule is broken. Great referees let the rest of the game proceed naturally. When we discover that living in peace is God’s absolute design for our life, we can trust him to shake us up when we move out of his will. As long as we are fulfilling the conditions of a right relationship with God, we are at peace. If we begin to move away from God’s purposes, He will blow the whistle on us by lifting our peace.

God wants us to choose what we do with our lives. If he doesn’t like our choice, he will make that clear. God is in the business of producing mature sons and daughters who can think with the mind of Christ, not a bunch of spiritual babies who need a word just to brush their teeth in the morning. In your choosing, pursue peace because the path of peace is to become spiritually minded (Rom 8:6) and mature in God.

Insight!