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The ValleyPoint Church Christmas Generosity Initiative

Published on December 19th, 2014

I love being part of a generous, life-changing community. ValleyPoint Church has generously shared in the past with our community partners. Our goal is simple – we want to help them as they help others. We want to elevate what they are doing so they can effectively serve. Our initiative this year focuses on the impoverished, world hunger, and families in need. It’s time to generously share!

 
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start the stop list

Published on November 25th, 2014

no mainWhat can you stop doing today?  Where can you exercise a quick and decisive “no?” Most of us enjoy pleasing people. We like to say “yes” so that others think highly of our abilities. We like to say “yes” so that we won’t be forgotten when new talent arrives. We like to say “yes” because the applause at the conclusion is something that we’ve allowed to become part of our identity and self-worth. There is a limit though. Too many “yes” moments make for an impossible pace while hurting our ability to focus on our expertise. Maybe the greatest thing that we could do today is to stop something. Saying “no” can be a wonderful gift you offer to others. You cannot take on everyone’s full range of requests, demands, or emotions. Free yourself. Say no.

What can you stop doing today?

 

 

 
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few…[a leadership thought]

Published on October 28th, 2014

few mainWhat makes a person a leader? Often it is the fact that there are not many who “see what they see.” It’s not that others are incapable, it’s just that leaders have great vision clarity.

As a leader…
Very few have the same passion.

Very few see what you see.

Very few dream as much as you dream.

Very few stay awake late into the night (or early in the morning) and worry as much as you worry.

Because there are so few, it is not hard to conclude that other people don’t care as much as they should. This can lead to moments of frustration where leaders become grouchy and lead out of discontent.

It’s OK that others do not see what you see. This is why you lead. This is why you accomplish things that many cannot. This is why you refuse to settle for average. So…help others see. Share stories from within your organization. Provide clear next steps and action items for those you lead. And keep passionately seeing things while moving forward.

 
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I know less…and this is good

Published on August 30th, 2014

I know less mainOne of the leadership lessons I’ve been learning recently is that knowing less can be a good thing. I think we often assume that capable leaders know everything. It’s simply not true. As I’ve grown with the organization I serve, I know less. It’s fair to say the higher you move within your organization (team, group, etc.) the less you know about every detail because your focus shifts from tactics (how) to strategy (what). There are other people who can build better systems. There are other people who can provide financial solutions. There are other people who can give technical answers. There are certain areas where I don’t have much skill, and so it becomes counterproductive for me to give my time to those areas. It’s not going to help. I must continually focus on where the organization is going, and how we get there while allowing other gifted individuals to shape and perfect that focus. I read recently that leadership is not about me. I believe that…but that can be a difficult thing to live because it’s easy to feel threatened and territorial. Those are feelings that I must abandon in order to move forward.

In order to “know less,” here are behaviors I’m learning to embrace:

+ Find fantastic people. Trust them. Free them. Let them decide.

+ Deepen your own well. I must continue to learn and grow personally so that I can empty myself and give away what I’m learning.

+ Find a balance between casting vision and letting the vision breathe and grow. It is possible as a leader to present too many “big ideas” without letting the last “big idea” become part of the fabric of the organization. Cast vision and then let it grow!

 

 

 
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chutes and ladders

Published on August 27th, 2014

chutes and ladders mainI’ve played multiple games of Chutes and Ladders in my parenting career. With six children, I can’t seem to escape the game. And…I never win. Never. I’m destined to hit every chute and often wallow in the middle to lower part of the board. I’m not bitter though because it’s about the time with my kids that is the most important part of the experience. Still, a win here or there would be good for my psyche. It finally happened. I played with my son Caden recently and absolutely dominated! Caden responded well and may have even laughed at my gloating. I’d like to think he was actually proud that his dad finally won at the game that has eluded me for years.

Now, here comes the cheeky comparisons to real life (as opposed to the game of Life). Life is a series of spins, steps, climbs, and slides. It just is. As much as we want our experiences to always fall in the “win” column, it doesn’t happen. We experience loss and failure. Try again. Laugh. Play. Embrace the tension. Find someone to celebrate the wins. Find someone to cry over loss. And…keep spinning. Your next move, creation, idea, prayer, or act of compassion could be the very thing that moves you in the right direction.

 
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college bound

Published on August 22nd, 2014

oldest and youngestI dropped my firstborn child off at college yesterday (Go Temple!). Not sure how I feel about all of this. I’m happy for him and excited about the numerous opportunities in front of him. I believe he’s going to excel. But, it’s a hard thing saying goodbye to someone who’s been in our house and an immense part of our lives for eighteen years. All of the meals, conversations, laughs, and simple presence…there will be less of these items that we’ve taken for granted. He’s not far from home, but it’s still different and will never be quite the same. The relationship changes yet again. It’s a new experience for us as parents and will no doubt prepare us for the next child to leave our home. It happens. It’s good. I’m learning again…

 
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a stake in the ground…

Published on August 20th, 2014

stakes mainI’m excited about the future of ValleyPoint Church and our pursuit of a “real home.” The stakes are in the ground and from my office I can see where our future home will be. I’ve even had fun walking around amongst the stakes dreaming about how ValleyPoint will get the opportunity to welcome many with open arms and a warm smile. We’re on a great journey. Drive by…walk around…dream…they’re more than just stakes. Those stakes represent a real home for God…for others…and even for me! Can’t wait.

Stay updated on our journey at myrealhome.org.

 
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Great words…

Published on August 18th, 2014

Hebrews 12 mainTherefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up. And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us. Hebrews 12:1,2

 
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make your space great

Published on August 15th, 2014

great spaces mainGreat spaces are inspiring! These spaces invite you in to browse, relax, and unwind. They say, “stick around and enjoy your time.” I ate at a restaurant recently that completely captured my attention. Beyond the service, the space itself had an ardor that connected. I wanted to stay long past my meal.  I also was able to watch a training session recently for a business that was preparing to launch. They created space that was fun and shared the narrative of what they wanted to accomplish. I enjoyed watching! We all have space that defines us. We all have space that we can influence. Make it you so that it shares a story.

Your classroom…

Your home…

Your office…

Your cubicle…

Your training session…

Your church…

Your locker…

Your desk…

Your meeting…

Your party…

Your ___________________. Make it great by making it you!

 
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rest…

Published on August 14th, 2014

rest mainNaps are beautiful. They are not for everyone, but I still feel they’re beautiful. I don’t often get to take them, but when I do, they restore alertness. I feel refreshed. I recently had a chance to take some time to vacation with my family. Slower mornings. No agendas. Time to eat and converse. Time to laugh. Time for, dare I say…nothing. It felt like a nap. I was able to rest. In my rest, conversations were deeper, food tasted better, walks were brisker, the ocean smelled better, and listening was a joy. I think these things happened naturally because I had rest.

Perhaps I should put my phone down a bit more. Maybe I should intentionally schedule rest. Maybe quiet should be a higher priority. A surfeit of busyness warps. It numbs. There are seasons for inventing, building, learning, strategizing, leading, and conquering. But, there should also be a season of rest. How is your rest?