“Most things don’t happen.”

— P. K. Hallinan

The moment your focus settles on “that” you may be setting yourself up for big trouble.

When it’s got to be that, then suddenly the horizon narrows.

Doors slam,

Options fade,

Opportunities flow elsewhere.

I learned this the hard way.

As a young man I longed to become a pastor, I knew that was God’s calling on my life.

Knowing the “Big That” is vitally important.

I didn’t care where I pastored, I just wanted an opportunity.

I didn’t have a master plan or strategy, I just keep growing and becoming a better pastor along the way. I didn’t care who came to my church, I didn’t make a big deal about a particular style or approach. I didn’t narrow my focus on reaching a particular profile of people, I just focused on loving Jesus and loving the people crazy enough to give me a chance and kept trying to get better at it.

And even through there were a lot of misfires and mistakes, somehow it worked.

The only time I got into trouble was when I got my focus off loving Jesus and loving people and got my eyes on some “that” which seemed to be the silver bullet which was going to solve all my problems.

I fell for the trap of “success with terms.”

Then just being the best pastor I knew to be was not enough.

I wanted to be the pastor of that church or I wanted that person to be on my team or I’d tell myself that if I had that style of worship or that prop or that…whatever…then (and only then) would I really be a success.

And suddenly the joy was gone, the work was hard and even if there were positive results there was no deep fulfillment it.

But something I’ve learned…”thats change”.

Every year or so someone comes along with a new that, writes a book, holds a conference and everyone (it sure seems like everyone…at least all the successful ones) jumps on board.

And simply loving Jesus and loving people seems so…so…unsuccessful.

But don’t be fooled by that.

The ONE THING for today: Actually there is a place for “that.” Clarity on what is essential and mission critical is vitally important. But the rest is mostly about loving Jesus and loving people and trusting that it will somehow all works out. And THAT is the truth.

I’m tempted to write a book about this…but there’s really nothing much left to say about it…

Just keep loving Jesus and He will show you what to do…and mostly it will be to love people. And the future, like today’s picture, will always be a little unclear, but you can tell it is beautiful.

Photo by Daniel Seßler on Unsplash

One thought on “Beware of that!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s