Thursday, December 31, 2020
Tuesday, December 29, 2020
When Greg asked me to marry him, he told me that we have “synergy”. He said that we were better together than we were apart. At the time, I did not get it. I did not think it was very romantic. I am so blessed that Greg had a big picture vision of how we would be better together for the LORD than we would be a part. He was more spiritually discerned than I was and recognized that when we worked together the power of God was more effective through us and that we were better at building community together than we were apart. At one point, Greg even went so far as to tell me that one day God would use me to teach in other nations. I laughed at him because I did not see the vision as he did. I cannot begin to tell you how often in my life I have pondered Greg’s wisdom and his patience in collaborating with me. I am so thankful that he was willing to abide with God and hear from God about how we would be better together than we are apart.
This reminds me of Deborah in the Bible. She heard from God a message that she needed to give to Barak. She listened and obeyed. She was patient with Barak as he learned how to collaborate to help the nation find victory over their enemy.
As I studied Deborah and Barak recently God really pressed in on me on the importance of synergy. I realized how valuable a gift it is when we were with someone that gets it. The truth is that there are two levels of partnership that must take place for us to have a synergistic relationship. Spiritual synergy must begin with God. It is about us crying out to God and seeking Him, knowing Him, and desiring to hear from Him and be with Him. When we have developed this relationship we will discover that we are just like Deborah and able to hear a clear message from God and go forth and give messages that will help route enemies in the lives of those around us. Our trust in God and His work in us makes us trustworthy to those around us which will then build in the synergistic relationship with have with others.
Spiritual synergy is born from mutuality! Give and take! Without mutuality, the relationship will die! Spiritual synergy is born in abiding and then is grown through agreement, concession, collaboration, exchange, and reciprocity. At any point, we can stop this synergistic momentum. We can hinder our spirituality by not abiding with God and we can hinder by not being willing to grow in mutuality with others. This can make marriage a nightmare, work unbearable, and friendships die. But, when we are willing to grow in mutuality born of abiding in the LORD then we discover that we are willing to dare to do something we might be afraid to do like Barak going into battle against Sisera or slaying the enemy with a tent stake like Jael.
On a more personal level, spiritual synergy helps me to slay me! Yeah, you heard me! Sometimes, my greatest enemy is growing in synergy is me. When I am caught up in my emotions, thoughts, habits, or wants and desires and I do not seek the LORD before I speak or act then I am the one that has taken myself out of the mutuality of synergy. I actually rob myself of the gift of synergy. Why would I do that? UGH! It really annoys me when I do because there is nothing more beautiful than when two work together in a synergistic relationship.
I recently read four facts about synergy by Darren T. Carte at likeateam.com. I love the four facts that he used to summarize synergy. 1. Synergy helps us to create something we cannot do on our own. 2. Synergy releases power as we partner with others. 3. Synergy is born out of shared responsibilities in the community. 4. Synergy that is born of God will build the next generation! Think about it. It is all about RELATIONSHIPS! Our relationship with God and then our relationship with others. One feeds the other and both are what make us able to slay our enemies!
Synergistic relationships strengthen us and lighten our load. They enable multiplication to take place and allow our tent stakes to expand beyond us. I want spiritual synergy in my life! Don't you? I find myself asking, What do I need to do to make sure that I am abiding in a healthy way with God so that I may hear His heart and speak from His heart? Who are the people that I need to seek to find mutuality with through collaboration, agreement, the exchange of ideas, reciprocity, and at times concession? I am so thankful for the maturity of Greg in my life to recognize that we have synergy! Who does God want you to do that for in your life today?
Monday, December 28, 2020
Can you tell what God has done for your own soul? I remember the first time I stood in the front of a foundations class of a hundred or more pastors and ministry leaders to share my testimony, I was terrified. My hands shook and well I would most certainly need a shower after nervousness poured out of my skin. I thought that to share my testimony meant to share my personal story. It does, but it also doesn't. I learned very quickly the hard way that my story was as painful to listen to as it was to share. Innocent ears need not hear about the uglies. Yes, it is important to tell, but it needs to be done with discretion. Some things are not worthy of repeating, but there are some things that should be shouted from the roof tops. I wish someone would have saved me of that struggle that day, but God used it to grow me. Honestly, my heart was just for them to see how God had changed me. I wanted them to see and hear first hand all I had seen and heard. I wanted them to have what I had in the LORD.
Sunday, December 27, 2020
Saturday, December 26, 2020
Wednesday, December 23, 2020
(Light of the world by Mark Missman)
This morning as I sit by my Christmas tree while my pup is curled up on my toes and I sip my cup of tea, I am blessed by a few thoughts as I read the Christmas story yet again. I ask myself, What patterns do I see in people's behaviors? I love that when people heard about the baby Jesus they wanted to see Him. Curiosity motivated many to go and see. Who is this Christ child? Why is He born in Bethlehem? Why is He lying in a manger? Who gets a star and a host of angels for a birth announcement? I noticed that the people that had to go check things out included the poor shepherds, the rich wise men of the east, and the evil King Herod. Both the good and the bad. The shepherds were emotional and spontaneous! They wanted to go see Him out of curiousity. Curiousity turned to reverence and awe that poured out in celebration and proclamation. The wise men used science to draw them to the historical reference to a king prophesied in the stars. Their journey was logical and calculated with pre-planned extravagant gifts. King Herod's response was passionate and intense spawned in fear and jealousy that led to a manipulative plot to kill the Christ child whose kingdom was prophesied to never end. While the shepherds longed for deliverance and hope, the wise men wanted to see history and science unfold a great mystery. Sadly, King Herod wanted to silence the Breath of Life so he could reign without competition. Isn't it amazing that a little child could evoke such passion from so many! When we reflect on Christmas we must ask ourselves, Why do I run to see the Christ child? What is my motive and reason? Am I spontaneous, logical, or manipulative? Do I come ready to celebrate, proclaim, and give Him good gifts? Or do I manipulate and plot to stay on my personal throne?