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I met a young man the other day who runs a successful executive coaching business. This is not unusual; there are many men and women running successful executive coaching businesses. What intrigues me about this young man is the uniqueness of his approach. He operates fundamentally and foundationally from the exercise of discernment and the application of truth – discerning what is false and apply the truth to close unhealthy gaps.

As best as I can tell, this young man does not dilute, wrap, or compromise his operating model with secular and humanistic schemes. It is the purest kingdom approach to business coaching I have ever encountered. It is inspiring…

And challenging.

God has used this conversation to challenge me on two fronts. First, He has reminded me to stop avoiding conflicts that sharing the truth might create – to commit my way to Him, trusting Him to accomplish what He intends (Psalm 37:5).

My resistance in this area comes from genuine concern that I might injure someone with my version and presentation of the truth. As I’m sure you recognize, this is a poor excuse for conflict avoidance. Am I willing to deprive someone of the truth and its freedom in order to maintain a sense of peace between us? That is not Christian love; that is cowardice.

What I must do is allow the Holy Spirit to transform me into a surrendered instrument of the Father’s grace – dying to myself for my brother’s sake.

God has also challenged me to seek and destroy deception in my own life. This conviction contains two applications:

  1. God has called me to help others discover and overcome the deceptions of their carnal mind. I cannot call or lead someone out of deception if I am willing to accommodate it in my own life.
  2. Transformation requires the stripping away of my conditional responses to God’s offers of grace.

This second application requires some explanation. One of my heart’s greatest desires is to experience the “greater than life” with others. Jesus promised such a life to all who would believe in Him (John 14:12). The result of that life is the glory of our Father in heaven (Matthew 5:16), through the good works we were created to walk in (Ephesians 2:10).

The “greater than life” is what we were created for!

The Holy Spirit will transform us for this life, through the renewing of our minds (Romans 12:2, 2Corinthians 3:18), but only as we submit to His work. With God, conditional submission is an oxymoron; our conditions clog up the flow of God’s grace.

To be transformed, we must join the Holy Spirit in searching out our conditional responses to God’s grace, and then take those thoughts captive to the obedience of Christ (2Corinthians 10:5). This prayer will help:

Search me, oh God, and know my mind;

Try me and know my self-deceptions;

Expose the wicked thoughts that are hidden in my subconscious;

Lead me to freedom by the truth of your word.

God bless you with grace for the exercise of discernment and the application of truth – for yourself and those in your spheres of influence.

Please pray the same for me.

Humbly yours and forever His,

Rob

Thinking “outside the box” is a popular notion in the workplace. Consultants are paid good money to free company executives from the constraints of their day-to-day mindsets.

Most “outside the box” thinking focuses on strategic planning, product development, and operational efficiency. As important as these are, there is another area that promises even greater return: Thinking “outside the box” about relationships. In fact, failing to consider relationships will inhibit – perhaps doom – all other “out of the box” efforts.

So, let’s take a moment and think about it.

Our mind does not willingly explore what we know about someone, beyond the minimal requirements of our relationship with them. There exists a subconscious boundary, based on an unchallenged desire for comfort. We don’t want to discover things we might be responsible for addressing – things that might steal from the time we spend thinking about ourselves.

This is a tragedy, for people are more than we might imagine – even the people we think we know well. Haven’t we been warned not to accept things (or people) on their face value? Does that only apply to things (and people) we are unfamiliar with? Doesn’t that kind of thinking limit our intelligence and response?

Where is human curiosity when you need it? Read the rest of this entry »

You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do they light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven. Ephesians 5:14-16

Some of you might be new to Workplace Leadership. Some of you may have simply forgotten. And, yes, some of you are actively resisting what you know is God’s purpose for your life.

It has been a while, so let me lay out some fundamental truths about God’s intention for the Workplace.

  1. Most people spend most of their waking hours in the Workplace.
  2. God has not turned the Workplace over to His enemies.
  3. Every person that has influence over one or more other persons, in the Workplace, is a Workplace Leader. Your position in the hierarchy does not matter. Their age (and yours) does not matter.
  4. God is a very careful orchestrator. There are no coincidences for God’s children. You are a Workplace Leader because God wants you to be; and because He has intention in your positioning.
  5. It is your solemn responsibility to discover how God intends to use you in your current position – and to surrender to His intention. If you do not, the Master will label you as lazy, wicked and unprofitable; and He will have you cast into outer darkness (Matthew 25:14-30).
  6. On the other hand, God knows something about you that has led Him to position you in the Workplace. He has favored you in His wisdom and grace. He is offering you an opportunity to walk in His glory.
  7. God has promised to prepare you, and go before you. The first step is simply a choice – to surrender to His will for you. His grace will accomplish the rest.

Do not settle for “church” that is a group of people gathered in a place. We are the called out ones!  We are set apart to be holy salt and light!  We are the instruments of God’s glory – everywhere and all the time!!

If I can help you experience God’s joyful and Spirit-filled ministry in the Workplace, please let me know. It is the desire of my heart to be a part of Him giving your desires to you (Psalm 37:4).

Humbly yours and forever His,

Rob

Have you ever noticed how capable humans are at ignoring the things that we don’t want to deal with?  We construct blind spots simply because we do not want to face the reality of our situation.

This also happens in groups.  Here is a case in point.

Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. Ephesians 6:10

In my humble opinion, this is the most power-filled verse in the entire Bible. Three of God’s “power” words are included:

  1. Be strong (endynamoō): The root is dynamis – the explosive power of God.
  2. Power (kratos): The dominion of God – the power of His authority to reign.
  3. Might (ischys): The ability and force of God – to accomplish what He intends.

This is what Paul is talking about when he goes on to encourage us to put on the whole armor of God. This is what it takes to stand against the wiles of the devil. Get your head around that!

As leaders in the Workplace – that includes all segments (business, religion, education, government, etc.) – we are responsible for leading others into this kind of radical life. Note carefully: This is the normal Christian life!

But how can we lead them into something that we have not experienced ourselves? Are you as frustrated as I am? Where is the power? What are we doing wrong?

Read the rest of this entry »

Multi-ethnic pile of handsEvery organization has a structure. That structure tends to be hierarchical and based on worldly principles. Its primary purpose is to support organizational governance. We are all very familiar with these structures. I want you to ignore them for a moment.

Instead, I am encouraging you to consider a different structure – a structure that also exists in the place where you work. I am encouraging you to consider the spiritual structure that God intends to establish in your workplace.

Depending on the workplace, spiritual structures can be very hard to see; but, make no mistake about it: They are real. Spiritual structures do not readily align with hierarchical structures; primarily because they are organic in nature (think vine and branches). Spiritual structures do have an authority component, but the manifestation of that authority seldom looks like a worldly hierarchy (e.g., the greatest must be servant of all).

Point: Jesus is building His church outside the boundaries of meeting time and place. In fact, there is growing proof that He has turned His attention to the place where most of His followers spend most of their waking hours – in the workplace.

Point: Jesus gave gifts to the church; that we might grow up into the vision of the church He is building (Ephesians 4:11-16). Whether these gifts are real people or people that have these gifts, Jesus is working through designated individuals in the workplace.

Point: God is a careful orchestrator. There are no coincidences for His children. He has positioned leaders in the workplace to help assemble and supply a platoon there.

Question: What is your role in this movement of God? How has God defined and described your role? Are you an apostle, prophet, evangelist, pastor or teacher? Are you an elder; or a deacon? Is your role something more supportive; like watchman, or prayer warrior? Read the rest of this entry »

Mountaineering_iStockAnd not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope. Romans 5:3-4

Tribulation has been promised to the children of God (John 16:33). Received appropriately, it also promises to be good for us. “Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan ‘Press On’ has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race.” Calvin Coolidge (borrowed from the Apostle Paul)

But if we hope for what we do not see, we eagerly wait for it with perseverance. Romans 8:25

As Christian Leaders in the Workplace, we have a strategic advantage. As spiritual beings, our vision is supernaturally attuned to the things we do not see. Our hope is not dependent on the temporal. Tribulations and trials do not tear us down. By the grace of God, they build us up.

God has put a hope in your heart for the things of His kingdom, in the workplace. He is looking to show Himself strong on behalf of those that will wait for it with perseverance. Take a moment and prayerfully consider the area in your life that is calling out for faithful perseverance. Joyfully join into the Holy Spirit’s work for your transformation (2Corinthians 3:18; Romans 12:2).

Humbly yours and forever His,

Shining Light (Biblical concept-Hiding your light under a bushelLet your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven. Matthew 5:16

The workplace was created by God to provide man with the means for loving Him; and not just with our finances. We are to love Him with all our heart, mind, soul and strength. All our talents should be invested into His kingdom work.

To love God fully, we must love our neighbors as ourselves. We love God by loving others, in and through our work. Furthermore, kingdom enterprise has supernatural power to transform communities through works of mercy and service.

When we do our work for others – to meet the needs of employees, customers and those less fortunate – they will see beyond who we are and recognize the One that gives all good gifts to men. They will glorify our Father in heaven. In beholding His glory, they will be transformed (2Corinthians 3:18).

As you make plans for the remainder of this year, be sure to include at least one strategy and project for the One that you serve. Include others in the work. Plan to sacrifice.

Humbly yours and forever His,

And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance; for you serve the Lord Christ. Colossians 3:23-24

Work is a part of the normal Christian life. It is not a deviation; and it is not God’s intention for work to be a distraction from our living that life. Work is a place where the Christian life is to be lived – in fullness. Grace and faith are necessary at work. Salvation happens at work. So does transformation, sacrifice, making disciples and every other Christian activity and process.

There is nothing in the kingdom of God that does not belong in the workplace. In fact, it is God’s intention for all of the workplace to come under His reign. Whether we want Him to or not, God is at work in the workplace. It is a sobering fact: We are either for Him, or against Him; victor, or victim.

Ask God to give you a new paradigm regarding His kingdom in the workplace. Why has He given you authority and influence there? What might the normal Christian life look like – for you – in the place where you, and most everyone else, spend most of your waking hours?

Humbly yours and forever His,

P.S. – This is the first of a new series I am calling “A Moment with the Map Maker”.  These will be quick read devotions (200 words) that are easy to share with those in your spheres of influence.  Let me know what you think.

A Storm is ComingWith a storm on the way, it is more important than ever to find the center of God will. That place is the safest place. It is the place where chaos turns to adventure; where fear has no place; where our houses will stand as a refuge for others. This is the place we want to be; so how do we find it?

God’s eternal will is for the restoration of the three things that He lost in man’s rebellion: His reign over our hearts, His intimacy with us, and His habitation in us. I believe that our pursuit of His purpose in these three areas will supernaturally propel us into His will for this strategic season.

This article relates to the restoration of God reign over our hearts. The articles and assessments for the remainder of this series can be found at the following locations:

Our Preparation as His Habitation

Our Preparation for Intimacy with Him

Many in the body of Christ are recognizing the inevitability of the storm. That recognition has created urgency for preparation; and a desire to know how we are doing in that preparation.  Assessing our preparation under His reign is critically important.

Is there a biblical way to assess our preparedness, and receive wisdom and revelation in the ways God would have us strengthen our house? I believe so. In fact, we are encouraged and commanded to do exactly that: Read the rest of this entry »

A Storm is ComingBut to each one of us grace was given according to the measure of Christ’s gift.  Therefore He says:

“When He ascended on high,
He led captivity captive,
And gave gifts to men.”

…And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers, for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ… Ephesians 4:7-11

 There are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit…
But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to each one for the profit of all… to another prophecy… But one and the same Spirit works all these things, distributing to each one individually as He wills. 1Corinthians 12:4-11

Pursue love, and desire spiritual gifts, but especially that you may prophesy… he who prophesies speaks edification and exhortation and comfort to men. 1Corinthians 14:1-3

There has never been a greater need for the gift of prophecy in the church than the season we are now facing. This gift, in all its forms, has been dismissed and abused, shunned and neglect.

I was not raised in a stream that talked much about prophecy; and I recognize that I am not an expert. But this I know, prophecy is a gift of Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit. It is time we searched it out seriously for our personal preparation and for the edification, exhortation and comfort of those in our spheres of influence.

As a start, let me offer a brief perspective on the ways prophecy has been offered as a gift to the children of God. Read the rest of this entry »

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