Mother…

What could I say, that hasn’t been said a million times about mothers. I have a terrific mother. She’s not perfect but she loves her kids dearly and wants the best for them. She has always been good to us, and cared for us, and served us. All of our lives. I have a terrific mother in law who is the same with her kids, and thank God has accepted me as one of her own. I have friends who are moms, and it is a unique role to be a mom.

Lets face it moms do more than we can really say. It would be impossible to document a job description for a mother. It would be thousands of books long.

I have seen so many great examples of good mothers, oh I know there are some out there that aren’t so good, but for the most part moms are just a special breed.

The best mom I know however, and I say this without reservation, is my wife. Janae Is a great mom. There is really not much that she’s not good at, but being a mom is definitely at the top of her list of talents. Why? Here are some reasons I think Janae is the best mom ever.

1. She cares. No, really, sincerely cares about our girls and every step of their lives are important to her. We have frequent conversations about how they are doing, and how she can help them. She cares about their feelings, their physical health, their academics, their esteem, and what they care about.

2. She wants to understand. Many times I want them to understand me, but Janae has this ability to get to the middle of it, to hear what’s really being said. She has an empathy that goes far beyond compassion. She understands.

3. She laughs. She laughs at the girls, with the girls and makes the girls laugh. We laugh a lot at the Gadberry house. At life, at funny people, at ourselves, and at each other, and with each other. She loves to laugh.

4. She prays. Janae prays for our family and for our girls. She prays for their present, and their future. She prays for the best for them, for the favor of God on their lives, for them to make good decisions, and for God to direct their lives.

5. She talks. Janae has a tremendous wealth of wisdom. she has a practical common sense approach to life, that is grounded in the truth, and she shares those principles with her girls.

6. She models. She’s a teacher, a very gifted and talented teacher, who takes these motherly qualities and puts them to work in her second grade class and she gets tremendous results. My girls can look at her and see godliness, kindness, strength, courage, faith, hard work, smart decisions, and a normal person who loves life.

So, you can probably read this and say this was a self indulgent attempt to brag on my wife, well ok, your probably right but every bit of it is true, and If i was going to tell any young woman how to learn to be a mother, I would simply say, watch Janae, do what she does and you will raise children, who will rise up and call you blessed!

Happy Mothers day all you great mothers out there. We love you and thank you for all that you do, and have done, and will do!

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Excellence…

Excellence simply means to excel. To be distinguished. To stand out above the rest. I was recently looking at the life of Daniel, the Prophet the bible literally says he had an excellent spirit.

His peers and his leaders saw this in him. Excellence is visible. The single greatest way to move forward in any area of your life is to embrace excellence, in our thinking, living, and being.

Excellence is the antithesis of mediocrity. Yet everywhere we look we see mediocrity. We see things half way done, we see short cuts taken, we see people wanting excellent results with mediocre effort.

If I asked the question who would love to have a life of excellence, success in your family, relationships, job/career, even personally, hands go up everywhere. Everyone wants that. If I asked Who wants their life to amount to nothing. You want to accomplish nothing, get along with no one, succeed in no way. No one would raise their hand. No one truly wants their life to be mediocre.

The problem is not a desire for excellence but a desire to fulfill the requirements of excellence. We can’t have excellence from mediocre effort. It doesn’t work that way. Daniel lived several principles that I think show his excellence and in living these ourselves we will find excellence as a result. Excellence will open doors that nothing else can.

1. Daniel cared about doing things right and He cared about doing the right things.
If you read the story of his life you will find that he did his best with what he had, and he had the right priorities. Two of the greatest enemy’s of excellence are an “its good enough” attitude, and having our priorities out of whack. Getting caught up doing unimportant things, while those things which are important are left undone.
My dad taught me a very important lesson when I was growing up. He said, if you want privileges you must fulfill responsibility. Another way to say it is do what you should do before you do what you want to do. This principle will bring true excellence into your life.

2. Daniel lived with a higher purpose which is how excellence is produced.
Colossians 3:23 says, “whatever you do, do it heartily, as unto the Lord, and not unto man.”
In other words do all we do with 100% effort as if we were working for God himself. Our lives will be excellent if we live them with a higher purpose. As unto God.

3. He faced the worst with His best.
Daniel didn’t allow his circumstances to dictate his decisions or actions. We miss excellence when we react to hard, difficult or unfair situations with anything less than a spirit of excellence. Daniel was faced with betrayal false accusation, Peer Jealousy and persecution, but he never became spiteful, he never lowered himself to allow people or things to dictate his actions are decision making. He made decisions and acted on the foundation of his faith. He was living for God and not man.

I highly recommend you take a look at the life of Daniel, and recommend that you practice these principles he was so adept at. Care about doing things right, and doing the right things. Live with a a higher purpose. Face the worst with your best.

Lets live a life of excellence and see how it changes not only our lives, but the lives of those around us.

God bless.

overcoming frustration

Many times in the forty years of my life i have battled with frustration. The feeling that things just aren’t working out. The irritation that I’m trying hard to accomplish something and for some reason it just isn’t happening. The consternation that comes with expecting certain responses and results from people and them not living up to it, or worse, expecting big things from myself and not being able to meet a goal, or complete a task or get the results i was aiming at.

Frustration is a killer, its the step before discouragement and depression. Frustration unresolved steals motivation and momentum from your life, and brings everything to a halt. It opens the door to bitterness and offense in our lives, which lead no where but to negative circumstances.

So what is frustration really. Frustration is the difference between Expectation and reality. You expect your kids to behave a certain way, and in reality they are not perfect. Everything between the two is frustration. You expect to be at a certain level in your career by a certain time, but you don’t make it. The difference between what you expected and where you really are is frustration.

Given that life is imperfect, and there will be many times when our reality doesn’t line up with our expectations, how do we keep from being overrun with frustration?

The common Mistake we make is to get focused on our reality. There is nothing wrong with evaluating your reality, or being honest about it, but if we get to obsessed with it, or focused on it, especially in light of its deficiencies in relation to our expectations we will be overcome by frustration.

The answer is to keep our eyes forward, looking forward towards our expectations, moving forward towards stated goals, thinking forward in the direction of our vision, focused on where we are going, not where we have come from.

Expectations are powerful, we should set them high and shoot for them, and as long as we stay focused on that, then at some point our expectations will become our reality. Frustration can destroy that from happening.

Overcome frustration. Focus on your expectations.

David

Expectations…

I find in life, that much of the time we get what we expect. Especially in dealing with people. People have this uncanny way of responding to each others expectations.

I love the story of the teacher of the year, who was given average kids and told they were cream of the crop, and so she prepared in the summer and came to that classroom with the highest of expectations. She challenged them and pushed them to their limits, the limits of the cream of the crop.

The students responded by achieving great scores, better than any other class including the class of real overachievers. At the end of the year she was told that the kids were not overachievers but academically average, and she couldn’t believe it.

Great lesson to be learned here, we get what we expect. Our expectations cause us to behave in such a way that evokes a response. If our expectations are low, then the results will follow suit, but if we raise those expectations the results will be phenomenal. We get what we expect.

I’m expecting great things, what about you?

Next blog…”overcoming frustration..the difference between expectation and Reality.”

David

Global Reach for Justice…2009

Justice, what is it? Justice simply put is righting wrongs. We all have issues we think are wrong and need to be righted, and many of them we would not all agree on, but I think we can agree on some. Its not right when you see kids who live in such abject poverty they don’t have shoes. Going shoeless is very bad for their health, cuts on the feet, bacteria in the water, worms, are all things that cause disease in children as a result of no footwear.

I think we can all agree that the bloated bellies and skeletal bodies of families and especially children who experience malnutrition is not right. Its not enough just to have something to eat what you eat must have nutritional value or it fills your belly, but starves your body.

I think we can all agree that the buying and selling of human beings is wrong, and needs to be made right. We have a bigger issue of human trafficking today around the world, greater than ever in history. Humans, especially children bought and sold for inhumane work, and worst of all prostitution, sex trafficking.

I think we can agree that genocide is wrong, and yes it is still happening in places around the world, and nations are still recovering from it.

We can agree that lack of health care in third world nations, the lack of community development, and education, causing hopelessness and despair as well as death, from sicknesses that are easily cured if the medicine is available, is not right.

Its not right, that the very water that should be giving life to a community is what is killing it. Its not right that orphaned children are roaming streets with an almost certain future of destruction and death. Children caring for children or themselves, just to survive.

We could all make political statements at this point. Like well if they hadn’t done this, or if they would stop that. We use the word “they” to keep “them” distant from “Us” so we don’t feel responsible.

Its Not right, Its not Right……ITS NOT RIGHT!

I have a personal feeling of responsibility for people in these situations because I’m a Christian, and I know God loves everyone, and He wants everyone to experience His love. If we took time to really look at the life of Jesus we would see how practical and compassionate He truly is. We should be a reflection of that.

Proverbs 31:8-9 (MSG)
8-9 “Speak up for the people who have no voice,
for the rights of all the down-and-outers.
Speak out for justice!
Stand up for the poor and destitute!”

Matthew 25:34-40 (MSG)
34-36″Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Enter, you who are blessed by my Father! Take what’s coming to you in this kingdom. It’s been ready for you since the world’s foundation. And here’s why:

I was hungry and you fed me,
I was thirsty and you gave me a drink,
I was homeless and you gave me a room,
I was shivering and you gave me clothes,
I was sick and you stopped to visit,
I was in prison and you came to me.’

37-40″Then those ‘sheep’ are going to say, ‘Master, what are you talking about? When did we ever see you hungry and feed you, thirsty and give you a drink? And when did we ever see you sick or in prison and come to you?’ Then the King will say, ‘I’m telling the solemn truth: Whenever you did one of these things to someone overlooked or ignored, that was me—you did it to me.’

The Bible Clearly spells out for us our mission on this earth. To share the Love of Jesus, The Love of God, in practical ways, with those who so desperately need His message and His action. To long we have spoken and not acted.

This year we are bringing Justice in the ways we are able in the following places. Rwanda, Uganda, Ethiopia, and Cambodia. Doing leadership conferences, and Medical Clinics, building an educational facility, and distributing Bibles, feeding the hungry, and helping rescue girls out of forced prostitution. We are doing evangelistic concerts sharing hope, love, and Joy through Jesus, and resourcing Hope centers for orphans we’ve already built, as well as working with an after care program for girls who have been rescued from the Sex Trade.

We are committed to righting wrongs, to loving people, to bringing change to the world. We can’t do everything, but we can do something, and what we will never do, is nothing.

Our partners are…
http://www.crisisaid.org
http://www.hagarproject.org/
http://www.watoto.com/
http://www.cambodiaoutreach.org

If you would like to be a part of helping right wrongs, by being a part of this Global reach for Justice, Please contact me @ david.gadberry@harvestokc.com, or call 405 478 7373

Partner with us in this global reach for Justice.

please visit my Face book page and look under my videos, will give you a greater understanding.  You can also find the video on my myspace page, and at http://www.harvestokc.com under global reach.

thanks
David

Leadership Lessons Learned training for a marathon 3

15 miles makes 5 miles easy.  Another lesson i’ve learned while training is that enlarging your capacity gives you the ability to do the routine with greater ease.  When I first started running to get in shape to train for a marathon.  I couldn’t finish 3 miles without stopping.  The thought of running five miles regularly without being winded or stopping was beyond my ability.  As we’ve run, and continued to push farther and farther, it’s changed my perspective.  I’ve gone up to 15 miles, now when I go out an run a 5 mile run, it doesn’t even phase me.  Its comfortable, its refreshing, and it is not a strain on me.  Its all about perspective, if I’ve done something bigger and harder then things that use to be difficult i can do with ease.

As a leader we are faced with challenges all the time, and we question ourselves, can we do it? Will we accomplish it?  Its hard, complex, and tiring, but if we work hard and go there, allow ourselves to be enlarged then our capacity to handle things grows and gives us more opportunity, but if we look at the difficult and opt out, then we never get the chance to enlarge our capacity and change our perspective.

15 sure makes 5 a lot easier.  Go for it!

David

What it looks like to help someone….

I havent written in so long…I’ve been very busy in a good way.  I love what I do.  The fact that i get the opportunity to work for God and His church every day is incredible to me.  I am still in awe of it.  I love the feeling that I am right where I am supposed to be.  My wife Janae told me the other day how she loved walking into the classroom every day of the school year, and even when its tough she loves it, because its what God created her for.

There is no feeling in the world like knowing your doing what you were created to do.  Wow!  God is so good.

I was thinking the other day, if  you want to know what it looks like to help someone you should have been at our Royal Family Kids Camp.  Every year, for the last three anyway, we have had the priviledge of inviting several foster kids to enjoy a great camp absolutely free.  We had right at 80 campers this year.  This is no ordinary camp, thats for sure.  This camp is made specifically to cause the campers to feel like they are royalty.

All the campers here, are from foster care, so they have either been abused or neglected, so they come with all kinds of needs and issues.  We love them.  We love everything about them.  They are wonderful kids, with positive futures.  We registered them at one of our campuses and then put them on limo buses and took them on a 30 minute ride over to another campus, where all the counselors and volunteers were waiting with signs with their name on it welcoming them to camp.  As they come off the bus, still reeling from the fact that they were riding in a limo, their faces light up, as they see the smiling faces of people who are meeting them for the first time and accepting them, and treating them as if they are princes and princesses.

At the camp, we have two sets of volunteers we call grandma and grandpa, and aunts and uncles, these people love the kids and connect with them by writing encouraging notes to them all through the camp.  (this helps these kids embrace the family construct which they have learned not to trust).

We took them on a trip to the zoo, and the zoological society scholarshipped everyone for the day.  It was a great time and a great blessing.  We had swim times in our Jr.  Olympic size swimming pool, and a full on Carnival in our Gym.

They rode horses, went to chapel services, and had an all around blast.  There is one thing we love to do….we throw them a birthday party, I mean the best one you have ever seen, heard of, or even thought about.  Each camper received a  cake and presents for their b-day. (i don’t have time to explain all the reasons this is so important, but you can imagine).  We had a whole host of Disney type charecters who performed and interacted with the campers, it was incredible!

Then we had a special day for the girls and for the boys.  It culminated in a gala for the girls, where they dressed up in formals, and had a fine dining experience.  They were escorted in on the red carpet in fashion show style, all given a tierra and a friendship bracelet.  They enjoyed this so much, because they had etiquette classes earlier in the day, and were getting to practice what they had learned.  It was truly beautiful, and they brimmed with confidence and joy.

The boys, had what we called, “knights of the king”  bonfire.  It was a great boyhood memory.  They were gathered around the bonfire with painted faces grunting and yelling, and getting excited about being a knight for the king.  “A knight is loyal.”  They would say.  “I knight rights wrongs!”  they would yell.  It ended with the leader standing in front of the bonfire and asking them to accept the challenge to be a knight for the king.  He said, “who will accept this challenge.”  A wonderful thing happened, the boys spontaneously errupted in unified chorus, “I’ll be a knight for the King!”  It was a great moment.

The last thing we did and do every year, is what we call the “tree ceremony.”  We have two healthy trees that are growing now and we just added our third.  These trees are representative of hope.  We have the counselors set down with their campers.  Our ratio is one counselor to two campers, this is what makes the camp effective.  They talk about past bad memories, and they tell them to put them on a piece of paper just between them and God, and we all gather around the hole thats been dug for the planting of the new tree.  We say this week you have had the chance to make some new positive memories, and this an opportunity for you to say I am burying these past negative memories and they will not hold me back.  Then we allow them all to bring their notes and throw them in the hole.  Then we plant the tree atop the old memories, and we send them home with a picture book, of all the fun memories they had at camp.  It may not sound like a big deal to you, but it is to them.  We had one little girl who came to camp for the second time.  Her counselor noticed she did not have a note.  She asked her where her note was, and the little girl responded, I don’t need to do it this year, I buried my negative past last year, I don’t need to do it again.  Thats called forgiveness, thats powerful.

So if you want to see what it looks like to help someone, look at this.  80 campers and over 150 volunteers, and our church and many individuals and busniesses caring enough to treat some unfortunate kids like they’re worthy to be treated.

Its a beautiful thing, you gotta love it.  Foster care is a real issue in our nation, abuse and neglect are serious problems.  I wonder if there is any practical, non political, straightforward strategy to help the dhs, foster parents, group homes, and proactive parenting skills training or anything like that, in either Obama’s or McCains plans for the nation.  I’m going to research it, or you could tell me if you know, something needs to be done.

David