Writing a blog can be a dangerous undertaking! No, there have not been any threats on my life or people coming after me because of something I have said. The danger is not actually a physical one, but a spiritual one. Instead of finding myself in peril, the problem is one of theory versus application.
I hesitated to write this article. I hesitated for several reasons, but none of them are really important. What’s important is that the kind of behavior exhibited in Charlottesville will continue, and even spread, if people like us remain silent about it. If Christians, true disciples of Jesus Christ, remain silent in the wake of such racism, hatred, and evil, then we better prepare for it to be the norm. Not only that, but we will be held accountable for that silence.
It is critical for us as leaders of all sorts to become efficient managers of our time. Without this skill, we become ineffective and fail to achieve the potential God has placed in us. At the same time, there are crippling dangers ahead when we focus too much on maximizing our productivity. When we see the people around us as interruptions or distractions from our “important” work, we lose our influence and therefore our impact.
I know you have experienced this before. You are knee-deep in a project, thought, or even a day dream and someone knocks on your office door. Startled, you curtly ask what the offender wants or needs from you. They sheepishly respond that it was nothing important and say they will come back later. Maybe they are bold enough to say they wanted to talk with you about a subject, but you tell them it is not a good time. You will get back to them later…but you don’t.
Can you imagine a world where employers everywhere are asking the heads of their HR departments the following question – “Where can we find more Christians to hire? They make the best employees and leaders!” Is that so far fetched? Should it be? What would have to change in order for that to be possible?
Too many Christians see their work as a prison. It is a required part of their week, but it is not something they enjoy. When asked for their reasons, the answers vary, but there is a recurring theme. Most view their work as a necessary evil instead of a source of joy and an opportunity for impact. Very few would consider their work as a platform.
I recently had an extended conversation with a business professor at Point University, a local Christian university, about what makes their program different from other business programs. Of course, one obvious difference is the Christian perspective that is central to their mission. However, he went into more detail about another attribute that addresses the gap between knowledge and experience in business.
Have you ever been to the beach on vacation? One popular activity with children is to build sand castles down near the water. You will sometimes find the parents helping them, but more often the parents are sitting back watching or reading a book. I believe it is a subconscious dislike of meaningless work that causes this. Have you considered that?
A couple of great friends of mine visited the Billy Graham Training Center at The Cove for a Corporate Chaplains training conference. One of them told me about the various displays at the center and the interesting facts about Graham’s ministry. As he talked, I thought about how I would love to have the impact that Billy Graham has had for eternity.