Month: June 2012

THE DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE

THE DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE

Normally, this time of year, I’d write a post about one of the documents that state the greatness of our country.  Today, I simply want to give you an opportunity to read one of them in it’s beautiful fullness:  The Declaration of Independence.  It is about 3x the length of my normal post but it’s worth the read!

One key principle that you’ll understand is this – Freedom from… also means Freedom to

(The Declaration of Independence of the Thirteen Colonies
In CONGRESS, July 4, 1776
The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America)
When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. –That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, –That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security. —Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain [George III] is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.

He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.

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10 ENCOURAGEMENTS FOR SMALL BUSINESS OWNERS

10 ENCOURAGEMENTS FOR SMALL BUSINESS OWNERS

I love small businesses and their owners. Having owned a few (sort of), I know that there are days when you could take on the world and others when you want to crawl under heavy construction machinery!

In my blogging community, Melinda Anderson who hosts “SMALL BIZ LADY,” wrote a great blog that has 10 Bible verses to encourage the small business owner.

(CLICK HERE TO READ)

Peace!

ROWING TOWARD ALIGNMENT

ROWING TOWARD ALIGNMENT

My kids taught me about alignment a few years ago. Jumping into a canoe for the first time, the three of them paddled out onto the lake. My son starting paddling one way, his sisters the other. What began as a leisurely float on the water turned into an epic battle of splashes and frustration. Misalignment ruled.

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The natural drift in your life is misalignment. Defined as elements not being in sync with each other, misalignment can cause a spinning in your business, organization and family.

How do you avoid misalignment?

1.Keeping setting your eyes forward. We get so bogged down in our daily details that we forget the bigger picture. Seeing where you are going gives you a north star toward which movement happens.

2. Verbalize what needs to happen. It takes constant communication of where you are headed to keep people focused.

Question: What areas in your life seem to get out of alignment quickly? Write a reply below …

Peace!

 

BE WISE NOT RIGHT

BE WISE NOT RIGHT

As a leader, I can sometimes be a bit myopic when it comes to decisions.  I use to think a decision is either right or wrong.  Experience has taught me that decisions are rarely a yes or a no and rarely are they completely right or completely wrong.  Author and researcher, Jim Collins, says that successful organizations embrace a “genius of the ‘and'” concept which seeks the beauty in both (or more) options.  This leads to wisdom in the decision making process.  (Read Jim’s article here).

The benefits of seeking Wisdom is that it’s pursuit takes into account ambiguity.  Wise decisions help bad decisions refocus. Wise decisions allow for more input from others and the flexibility to adapt after the decision has been made.

So how do I make wise decisions or at least strive to make them?

  1. Involve others.  You may be smart but asking others their opinion can increase the wisdom factor 100 fold.  (Click Here to read more about Group Think) 
  2. Gain insight from the past, present and future.  What impact has this situation had in the past.  What is the reality of my situation today.  Will I be proud of this decision 6 months from now?
  3. Most importantly, Pray and Act.  Prayer has so many benefits.  As a Christian, prayer connects me with God’s Holy Spirit who already knows what’s going to happen.  It surrenders my pride, will and agenda to His and allows Him to press His thoughts into mine.

Question:  Add to the conversation – How do you strive to make WISE DECISIONS?  Write a comment below …
If you want to go deeper, read the story of Joseph (Click Here).

Peace,

GROUP THINK! FOR WISE DECISIONS

GROUP THINK! FOR WISE DECISIONS

Sometimes, I think I have the best answers to challenges that face a church/organization. After tasting the leather of my size 10 ½ shoe too many times, I’ve come to embrace the power of Group Think.

What is Group Think? Simply put, it deals with the principle mentioned in Proverbs 15:22

“Without advice plans go wrong, but with many advisers they succeed.” (God’s Word Translation).

It is the intentional seeking out of ideas from others so that YOU can make an informed decision. This is important for people to know – “Who is it that is making the decision?” Sometimes Group Think is as simply as asking other individuals what they think. Other times, it takes place in a scheduled session.

So how do you hold a Group Think session?
BEFORE THE SESSION:

  • Invite the right people. Ask “Who has experience in this area and who could bring some fresh perspective?” “Who has faced this issue before and succeeded?” “What character traits of people would I like to see represented?” Also important – “How many people do I want involved.” Remember, you’re not seeking consensus but ideas.
  • Pre-present the issue to the group. Letting people percolate ahead of time staves off the feeling that no one has any contribution to make. This is helpful when you’re brainstorming names of people for teams or venues to expand a brand or ministry.

AT THE SESSION:

  • Hold your idea of a solution loosely. Many times, the solution I come up with is only partially headed in the right direction. Keep open to the fact that someone else might have an idea or experience that helps clarify or redirect your initial thought.
  • PRAY publicly! Seriously. In prayer you invite God to take the thoughts of the group conversation, blend it with His will and deliver it to the decision maker(s).
  • State information about the problem selectively. Remember that too much information causes overload and too little cause too many questions. Give them a skeleton of the issue and let them fill out the skin and muscles.
  • Ready? Set? Go! Open it up and create an atmosphere of freedom and safety. You want people to share their ideas without the fear of being criticized. In my experience, it is important to have some one else take notes so I was available to clarify someone’s brainstorming or invite the quieter folks to state their opinion.

Group Think is a powerful way to uncover possibilities and opportunities that may have slipped by you before.

Question: One is one area in life which a Group Think could be of help to you? Write a reply below …

Peace!