How to Discover Your Passion

Recently, I wrote a post entitled “Follow Your Passion,” in which I outlined my journey in leaving pastoral ministry to full-time leadership development.  It was a long, heart-searching process that I went through to come to the place that I am at today.  So, I thought it would be beneficial to follow up that post with a simple list of 10 questions for you to work through in discovering your passion and purpose in life.

These 10 questions come from John Maxwell’s book The 15 Invaluable Laws of Growth, a topic that I enjoy teaching on.  More specifically, they fall under his chapter on The Law of Awareness, which states “You must know yourself to grow yourself.”  I am assuming that if you read my blog on a regular basis, your desire is to grow as a person and as a leader.  But, how do we do that?  One of the steps is in this area of self-awareness.  Do you really know who you are?  Have you taken the time to sit down and discover the unique individual that you are as God created you?  If not, then set aside 15 minutes of your time to work through the answers to these 10 questions.  It will be time well spent and you will have a greater understanding of who you are and what your passion in life really is!

  1. Do you like what you are doing now?
  2. What would you like to do?
  3. Can you do what you would like to do?
  4. Do you know why you want to do what you would like to do?
  5. Do you know what to do so you can do what you want to do?
  6. Do you know people who do what you’d like to do?
  7. Should you do what you’d like to do with them?
  8. Will you pay the price to do what you want to do?
  9. When can you start doing what you’d like to do?
  10. What will it be like when you get to do what you’d like to do?

If you would like to learn more about growing as a person, I highly recommend The 15 Invaluable Laws of Growth by John C. Maxwell.  I will be starting a 4-week virtual mastermind soon.  What my blog for an announcement concerning the details.  It should post in the next 24 hours.  I’d love to have you join me.  All you need is a phone and a quiet location.

Enjoy your journey of self-discovery!

30 Days of Intentional Living

Day 7: Your Second Clue About a Life That Matters

Intentional Living Day 7

Yesterday, we said that the first clue to gaining insight about a life that matters is to discover what moves you emotionally and makes you cry.  In other words, what makes your heart break over things that are wrong in the world.  You can see that post here.

The second clue to discovering a life that matters is to identify what makes you happy in life.  It is no surprise that, as leaders, what makes us cry and what makes us happy are closely intertwined.

In my last post I stated that what makes me emotional (i.e. cry) is people not living up to their God-given potential. As I reflected on today’s teachings, I quickly answered John’s question about what makes me happy (i.e. sing). It is simple. What makes me sing is helping someone to live up to their God-given potential – whether it is someone stepping across the line of faith and giving their lives to Christ, or someone who learns a new principle or teaching that opens up the door of potential in their lives. Adding value to others and helping them achieve success in their lives is a very fulfilling experience.

What I discovered in this lesson is that both are intertwined.  What makes me sing/happy in this life is helping to change the outcome of something that makes me emotional/cry.  Using the examples from my previous post…

  • Martial arts – helping that under-performing student discover and live up to their full potential.
  • Pastor – helping someone discover how God created them for a relationship with Him and for a purpose in this world.  As they discover that purpose in this world, they begin to live up to their full potential.
  • Coach – helping a church and its leaders discover how they can change a few simple things about their organizational systems and get great results in living up to their full potential in God’s Kingdom.
  • Business – helping a business owner or manager discover a few simple changes that make all the difference in how they relate to their customers and employees.  Then, the business begins to find it full potential in the community.

I’ve learned two steps to discovering a life that matters:  (1) what concerns me is people/organizations not living up to their full potential; and (2) what excites me is helping people/organizations live up to that full potential.

So, today, what makes YOU sing? You might just discover that the answer is closely related to the answer to the question of what makes you cry. Then, you, too, will have the second major piece of the puzzle to experiencing a life of intentional living. So, take a moment and discover a clue to living an intentional life.

ACTION STEP:  Take a few minutes right now to make a list of the things that make you sing (happy) in life.  As you read over your list, you’ll begin to discover your path to a life that matters.

30 Days of Intentional Living

Day 8: Your Third Clue About a Life That Matters

Intentional Living Day 8

John Maxwell has been challenging us during the 30 Days of Intentional Living program.  If you’ve been following along, I’ve been posting my thoughts and reflections about his teachings.

This post is the third clue to discovering a life that matters.  In the first post (Day 6), John asked the questions “What makes you cry?”  In the second post (Day 7), John asked “What makes you sing?”  Today, John asks “What makes you dream?”

What is it that you dream about in life? For me, these past three days have been easy to reflect upon because I have already been asking these questions of myself over the past year. I am saddened by lost potential in people’s lives. I am excited to find and help someone who desires to live up to their potential. I dream about pastoring a church that truly is in the business of producing disciples of Jesus, and helping other churches become that type of church.

I see a lack of intentionality in many churches and leaders today. What I do see is a lot of busy-ness in our churches. We try to have the newest programs so that we reach new people. While that is admirable, the Bible teaches that we are to produce disciples of Jesus Christ. Our mission is a mission of discipleship. That includes reaching new people, teaching them about following Christ, and helping them find a place of serving both in the church and in the community. It also includes reaching out to others with the love of Jesus and teaching them everything that we have learned about following Christ.

I dream about God’s kingdom filled with people who are leaders in His mission of producing disciples. Is it possible that the reason we have a leadership vacuum in the church is simply because we are not producing mature disciples of Jesus Christ? After all, leadership development is a large part of that discipleship process.

ACTION POINT:  Take a few minutes today and make a list of your dreams.  Then, compare that list with you two previous lists (what makes you cry and what makes you happy).  Look for common themes – those will be significant clues to discovering a life that matters!

 

After I finish this 30 Day emphasis, I will get back to posting about culture change and discipleship – two topics that you won’t want to miss.  So, fill out the form at the top right of my blog to receive your free e-book and you’ll be subscribed to my blog.  Then, you’ll receive email updates about my posts directly to your inbox.  That way, you won’t miss out on future posts.

30 Days of Intentional Living

Day 6: Your First Clue About a Life that Matters

Intentional Living Day 6

What is it that makes you cry?  What is it that makes you emotional?  What is it that stirs up emotions in you that make you want to do something about the situation?  The answers to these questions are your first clues to discovering a life that matters – a life of intentional living!

What makes ME emotional is people not living up to their God-given potential. I see this all around me in the various roles I take on in my life.

  • As a martial arts instructor, I see people who could be great martial artists if they would only apply themselves to practicing and working hard.  It is my role to encourage, challenge, and teach in a way that brings out the best in each of the students.  However, there are some who have the natural ability, but lack the passion.
  • As a pastor, I see people who never quite give their lives fully to God. They struggle and wonder why God doesn’t bless them when the reality is that they are holding back from God.  It’s only when we give ourselves fully to God that we truly experience all of His blessing in life.
  • As a coach and mentor to churches and pastors, I see people who want a different result, but aren’t willing to change what and how they do things, so that they can achieve a greater result. I also see men and women who are called of God to serve in full-time ministry, working in other careers because they aren’t willing to allow God to lead them wherever He wants them to go.  
  • As a business customer, I see organizations that could increase sales and provide better customer service if they would only make a few simple changes in their organization.  As the consumer, it is so obvious what needs to happen to make a company great.  However, it, too, requires changes that either the leaders of the organization fail to see, or they just don’t care.

In all these examples, people fail to live up to their full potential and I wonder what this world could be like if they did.

What makes me cry, then, is the story of someone who does live up to their full potential in Christ. Someone who understands and does what is necessary to become the man or woman that God has created them to be in this life. THAT is what moves me emotionally. THAT is what I want to give the rest of my life to help people discover – how to live up to their full potential. That, for me is intentional living.

ACTION STEP:  Sit down right now and make a list of things that move you emotionally, or make you cry.  You might just learn a bit about who you were created to be and what your purpose is in this life.

The Strategic Church Leadership Process, Part 1

Strategic Church Leadership

In my previous post What is Strategic Church Leadership?, I discussed the need for an overall strategy for looking at the local church.  As pastors and church leaders, we need to set aside time in our schedules for Big Picture Thinking – looking at the church from an overall perspective.  Now, I want to begin to unpack the Strategic Church Leadership Process.  In this post, I will share the first two steps in the process and subsequent posts will share the remaining steps.  Here is the diagram that I use to explain all the steps in the process.

Strategic Church Leadership Process

Strategic Church Leadership Process

 

The process begins in the bottom right corner and progresses as you move up the right side of the mountain.  After reaching the peak, you journey back down the left side of the mountain.  Then, you move across the bottom of the mountain and begin climbing again at a deeper strategic level.  Thus, the process is an ongoing and deepening look at the strategy for the local church.

Step One:  CLARIFY THE CULTURE

This step takes a look at our current reality.  

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