Monday, July 23, 2012

The Hi's and Lo's of Ministry: Forgiveness is a Choice

Hands down some of the best moments in my life have come from ministry BUT some of the most painful have come from ministry too. Pain is part of the gig but it is especially difficult when it comes from those you serve with, your colleagues in ministry. Forgiveness is a choice. I can choose to sit in a pit of bitterness or choose grace, mercy and ultimately freedom from the prison of unforgiveness. If you find yourself in a ministry lo here are steps you can take toward forgiveness. They have helped me and I hope they help you too.
  • First, acknowledge the pain. Remember that anger is a secondary emotion. Figure out the primary emotions that are driving the anger: rejection, disrespected, betrayed, etc.
  • Study Joseph's life; notice how he dealt with offense.
  • Pray for the people that have hurt you.
  • If necessary, have a conversation with those that have hurt you to seek understanding.
  • Choose, choose, choose to forgive. Let it go. Move forward. Refuse to let the hurt trap you in a pit and keep you from the adventure God has for you. 

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Love Trumps All! Peeled off the Wall

I had a reminder this week of the value of having someone in your life helping you to navigate through tricky leadership waters. I had a tsunami hit my well-laid out plans, and my first response was to hit the proverbial wall – which I did – and my husband peeled me off, helped me to process the issue, and then I was able to move forward. My goal was to approach the situation with the following mindset:

·         Generosity – Wanting to understand the reason behind the miscommunication, and extend grace and mercy to those involved.

·         Authenticity – While wanting to be life-giving, I also wanted to convey my concerns about the issue.

·         Grace-filled – I wanted to extend grace and mercy to the people involved; valuing the people over the project.

I hope I succeeded. These things are never easy, but what a great opportunity to follow the second greatest commandment that Jesus taught in Matthew 22:39, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” Love trumps everything!