How far “down the road” do you think, as a leader?
Sometimes people tell me they “take one day at a time”, or “all I need is grace for today”, which is really quite biblical.
Jesus said it like this, “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? 26 Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?27 Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life? … 33 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. 34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own. (Matthew 6:25-34)
Truth be told, I think there’s a huge difference between “worry for tomorrow”, and “planning ahead” for tomorrow.
Here’s what I mean, I took my son to a movie last night. We had a little father-son time together. We saw the new movie, “Now you see me”. I highly recommend it. It plays with your mind, has a few good twists in it, and makes for an interesting story line.
Without spoiling anything (honestly), there’s an element of “future thinking” at play in the film that could really relate to our leadership skill as pastors, teachers, parents, leaders, … in the corporate world and in the home. That theme concerns itself with future thinking. Five, ten, fifteen or even twenty year planning is good to think about in our lives, and in those we lead.
If you see the movie, you’ll understand what I’m talking about.
How far down the road are you planning for your vision to play itself out? Are you a person who needs instant gratification, instant results, immediate measures to tell if you’re successful or a failure? Or, are you able to plan ahead, lay some good groundwork for the future, and stick to the plan long enough to see the results you desire?
A former pastor, leader, friend of mine used to say, “Plan the work, and work the plan.”
I like that. Especially now in my years of ministry leadership. We just transitioned to a new venue for church gatherings. We meet in a local movie cinema in town, and we’ve seen a dip in church attendance, church offerings, and church ministry involvement. I am not discouraged, however, because I have been given a future thinking plan for the next ten, fifteen, even twenty years for this community church.
I saw this movie, “Now You See Me”, and came to the refreshing realization that, even though Jesus tells me “Don’t worry about tomorrow”, he doesn’t tell me, “Don’t plan for tomorrow.”
How are you seeing long-term fruit coming out of your ministry? When have you felt discouraged with “short-term” results in your life and have forgotten that God is working a “long-term” vision for you?
I’d like to hear about it.