January 9, 2012
The next few weeks may be the most important among all of the remaining weeks of 2012. Allow me to make my case: we have an almost unconscious willingness – between the post-holiday back-to-work moment and Super Bowl weekend – to consider new designs and directions in the year that lies open in front of us. Call it “wet cement;” we act as if there is still time to give new life to the 11 months that are on the near-term horizon.
Take the wheel, and steer your life the way you want to go in this fresh year of opportunity… or, let the culture set your coordinates and go along for the ride. If that’s your decision, you’ll be in the back seat for this journey, and you’ll be consigned to day-old headlines as your morning porridge. Ten months of presidential politics; 12 months of European financial/debt crisis; daily concerns over a 28-year-old son-of-a-mad-man whose video games have real nuclear warheads; the back seat chatter will be bleak.
Get out of the back seat; regain control. Get a look at the map for the next 357 days (leap year!) of your journey. How would you like to remember this year, among all the rest of your life-years?
Here’s a tip, from an aging friend to an aging friend: don’t be crazy. How so? “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.” (Albert Einstein)
Most security addicts think that it’s crazy to try something new. Einstein would say that it’s crazy not to try something new, if the results you are realizing from what you’re already doing aren’t enough to be satisfying and fulfilling!
Einstein – Nobel Peace Prize winner in 1924 – is one reliable source; God is even better: “Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the desert and streams in the wasteland…” (Isaiah 43:18-19)
If your default strategy for 2012 is to do 2011 over again, you must be coming off a record year. If 2011 was less-than-the-best, ever… maybe it’s worth looking in the playbook for some new offensive initiatives! With most of a new year in front of you, what’s new, in your mix?
Leadership is measured by initiative (“the power or opportunity to take charge or action before others do”); we talked about that last week (you were still on your holiday break, remember?) The key: your life next December will give evidence of the initiatives exercised by you during 2012. What new initiatives are you considering for this year of opportunity?
Last Monday, I challenged your thinking on the broad front of your life’s engagements. Today, I want to suggest that your Kingdom initiative for the new year should get top-seeded status in your mix.
Peter’s challenge: “Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God’s grace in its various forms.” (1 Peter 4:10). Boiled down: clarify your gifts, and put them to work in serving people, on behalf of the Kingdom. Don’t wait to be asked: take the initiative.
Identify a problem that awaits the arrival of a Kingdom solution, about which you have an irrepressible passion. Consider your gifts – your innate strengths, your unique story – and look for a role within that solution structure that would fit you to a “T.”
PS: The polls say that a lot of New Hampshire voters are still deciding; they have to act, tomorrow. If you’ve been waiting to decide about attending the Issachar Summit next Monday, decide now. Click on the graphic box below; you’ll be taken to the dedicated site for details. It’s the best thing you could do on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day; join the dialog with some incredible Kingdom men and women around the work being done – today – to complete the Great Commission. You belong in that mix!