Don’t Lose Sight of Light

Booster cables have become very important for my travel plans this month as unanswered car troubles have left me stranded in the funniest places. Although, it hasn’t seemed so funny in the moment … Inconveniences rarely are appreciated int he moment. Similarly, in any room, it can be easy to see inconveniences and frustrations and completely miss the light in a space. We often take light for granted – although we could do nothing without light.

Christ is Light.

Without Jesus, we are powerless.

I recently drove home after a day with inconveniences, car troubles, and frustrations – and while I drove, I recognized my misplaced focus. I had lost sight of light – and the moment I lose sight of light, I power right down.

I remember meditating on light in Nazareth Village one year ago in Israel…

I was given a gift there, a small clay lamp with a tiny wick. Jesus would have ignited lamps like this in the same way that he ignites and consumes hearts today with light – with goodness that blazes. There are certain aspects of our purpose and our lives that we question; however our call to be light is never a matter of confusion. God is clear in His word that we were made to be light in the world. The flashflood of God’s good presence is not meant for us to keep to ourselves, and we will not experience the fulfillment God intends us to until we let light shine through us. As we make space in our lives to experience more God-light, we will be compelled to let our own beams be a signal of God’s Kingdom on earth. It begins by choosing to see God’s light, and by choosing to believe that He is a God who sees, who cares and who acts mercifully towards us. This light knowledge and heart belief changes the perspective we have of our circumstances. We can see more clearly, our days don’t feel so blurred and we can help others do the same. We cannot offer what we do not have. May our own experience of God’s unrelenting light create hope for everyone we encounter today.

 

Measure Better this December

What are you trying to measure this December? A work out and healthy diet plan? Caloric intake? We all love to track and see progress. In fact, when we can see our own success – this is the best motivator for someone to continue striding towards the goal!

Measurables, numbers and results are concrete and tangible and we can draw a clear path that shows exactly how to reach our goals – a concrete plan. This helps all of us to feel in control and on top of things – like we have it together.

We often feel December is a month to have things together (gifts, feasts, friends and family). But in reality – it can be a month of unraveling (to-do lists, Christmas parties, pies and fancy social media posts can crowd and scatter any heart and head). On this first December day – The good news is – we all have choices.

And when it is all said and done, you can measure the results.

Measurables matter. They steer us and help us grow. They show us where to focus our internal and external energy, we’ve only got so much.

But, choosing what should be measured with highest priority is more important that the commitment to measuring. What about the things we rarely stop to measure? What if they may be most important measurables of all?

Trust. Relationship. Love. 

I recently left a trey of donuts in an unwanted area at my workplace. By the time I realized – they had transformed into untouchables! When I went to clean my thoughtless mess – someone had cleaned the stinking decayed sight – and in it’s place was my lovely trey, shiny and bright. I still don’t know who cleaned the mess – but the trust and love I felt from my staff team in that moment is tough to measure. It’s something deep. A heart full.

My students tell me they cannot learn in a classroom without trust. They don’t feel safe to answer questions, they are disinterested in the content and they count down the minutes until they can escape the room. In a learning space with trust – they say they are free to be real, make mistakes, look foolish and thrive. We rarely measure how students feel in a classroom. It’s hard to tag a number on trust.

Brainstorming ideas with event planners gets me thinking on trust, too. We recently evaluated a previous event – and trusted one another enough to openly share ways we can improve. Trust helps us be better and stick together. Meaningful relationships make work vibrant and alive.

I play music with a fun crew and trust is the glue. When my ideas are rejected (sometimes more graciously than others) it’s not a big deal when I choose to believe the hearts of the team are always for me – and we are united around the purpose of our playing: to give God glory.

Trust is the foundation for the flourishing of individuals, teams and communities. Trust is also the train tracks for the fulfillment of any great mission.

Patrick Lencioni, author and business consultant writes, “When there is trust, conflict becomes nothing but the pursuit of truth, an attempt to find the best possible answer.” – The Advantage

Love. Relationship. Trust.

This measurement fills all others.

Could these words be the largest scrawled on your December calendar this year? The highest priority measurable? These words have mighty power to invade meetings, celebrations, concerts, shopping bustle, decorating and deadlines.

Mary knew how to measure a full heart. She carried Jesus full term. He fulfilled prophecies set generations before his birth. He extends fullness of love, relationship and trust from the stable cave to every human heart, and the supply is unending. You don’t have to generate your own love, relationships and trust. Draw freely from his, drench your December calendar with it – and believe that all of the numerical measurables you hope to achieve will add up as God intends – as you measure better this December.