Something to Say about Leading Progress

“Leading to Progress Takes Courage”

Joshua 1:6-9 (NKJ)
6 Be strong and of good courage, for to this people you shall divide as an inheritance the land which I swore to their fathers to give them. 7 Only be strong and very courageous, that you may observe to do according to all the law which Moses My servant commanded you; do not turn from it to the right hand or to the left, that you may prosper wherever you go. 8 This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success. 9 Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.”

(MSG)
In the same way I was with Moses, I’ll be with you. I won’t give up on you; I won’t leave you. Strength! Courage! You are going to lead this people to inherit the land that I promised to give their ancestors. Give it everything you have, heart and soul. Make sure you carry out The Revelation that Moses commanded you, every bit of it. Don’t get off track, either left or right, so as to make sure you get to where you’re going. And don’t for a minute let this Book of The Revelation be out of mind. Ponder and meditate on it day and night, making sure you practice everything written in it. Then you’ll get where you’re going; then you’ll succeed. Haven’t I commanded you? Strength! Courage! Don’t be timid; don’t get discouraged. God, your God, is with you every step you take.”

Question: Why do we need courage? We need courage to be brave in the face of fear. Fear is our enemy. Any kind of fear is our enemy. Fear of rejection, fear of failure, fear of resistance, fear of opportunity, fear of people, fear of leadership. Fear is going to raise its ugly head in us any time we face a challenge, courage is the answer to that fear. Courage is important.

In Chapter one of Joshua it says be strong, take courage, and not fear four times. God is trying to get across to Joshua that Courage is important to leadership.

Why do we need courage?

1. For the pursuit of the dream vs 6
a. Owning the dream takes courage.
b. Think about the disciples after Jesus ascended. They had to rely on the Holy Spirit to give them power to be courageous, most of them all the way to their death.
c. The enormity of the dream can intimidate you (just another word for fear)
d. The enemies of the dream can sidetrack you.
i. Distractions
ii. Procrastination
iii. Personal doubt
e. others opinions of the dream can scare us.
i. The only opinion that matters about the dream is Gods.

2. To do what’s right vs 7
a. It takes courage to be a leader because real leaders do what’s right even when its not popular. Even when its hard, even when no one else is.
b. It takes courage to stick to the plan
c. Joshua did what was right even when those following him didn’t.
d. Think of the Apostle Paul when he called Peter out for his obvious hypocrisy.

3. Fear itself vs 8-9
a. You have to have courage as a leader simply to combat fear. Not fear of things but fear itself. Fear paralyzes, it puts a pause in your purpose.
b. You have to have courage to push fear back when all your circumstances are screaming you should be afraid. God said to Joshua do not be afraid do not be dismayed. In other words don’t let anxiety rule you.

4. Fear of leading people vs 16-18
a. Jeremiah 1….do not be afraid of their faces.
b. Courage in the face of responsibility for people
c. Courage in the face of the inconsistency of people
d. Courage in the face of the complaints of people
e. Courage in the face of the imperfection in people.

Courage is the ability to look fear in the face, and keep moving forward. If we are going to lead to progress, then fear can not rule us. Opinion can not rule us. Courage must be our central charecteristic. Progress is necessary but not inevitable. Someone has to lead to it. So lets lead, and see people’s lives changed because we are not afraid to do it!

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Something to Say About Leadership; What is Your Perspective of You?

Like I have said before the way to be an effective leader is to overcome insecurity (fear) in your life. The question is; How do you do that? I have introduced the idea that proper perspectives are key to dealing with fear. If I have the right perspective of God, and I realize he’s my father, and He’s good to me, and loves me, then what do I have to be afraid of?

However, even when people get that one right, there is yet another step to take. What is your perspective of you? So many people just don’t see themselves clearly. Janae (my wife) and I were talking about this just the other day. We are consistently evaluating one another in leadership, because we don’t want to have big blind-spots in our lives. You know what I mean, those areas of weakness everyone else sees but for some reason you can’t. We have committed we want to be aware of who we are, and how we conduct our lives.

What does having the right perspective of yourself have to do with overcoming insecurity or fear? Everything. If I see myself properly then i can be confident in who I am and not be afraid of people’s opinions. Many people are ruled by other people’s approval, its fear. Fear of rejection. Fear of not being liked. We can say all day we don’t care about that, but until we have the right perspective of ourselves we will be controlled by those kinds of feelings.

First as so many have written it’s important to know who you are. Know what your purpose/destiny is. However its my firm belief that you can’t know who you are, until you know who you are not. I realize that’s poor english, but true none the less.

How much time do we spend, or should I say waste, trying to be someone else. Trying to follow in the exact footsteps of people who have done great things. Instead of finding our own great thing. Its not the thing but the person that matters. There are lots of ways to do great things, but no one can do them all. You are created and purposed for those things, but insecurity creates competition and imitation. it’s fine to Emulate, but imitating is taking it to far. You can not be secure in who you are, if you’re trying to be someone else.

I use the example of John the Baptist. When the Pharisees came to ask him who he was, his answer was very interesting. Before he told them who he was, he said, as if to clarify, I am not the Messiah. This man knew who he was, and knew who he was not. He knew His role, and therefore wasn’t tempted to compete or feel insecure about Jesus role.

Look at who you are, and realize you’re not perfect, but you do have skills and gifts and talents, I believe God given. If we realize who we are is enough, and who God made us to be is the highest purpose for us, then we can do great things and feel completely confident, settled and secure.

I have been a Senior Pastor, I am now an associate. If feel no insecurity about that. I Know I excel in the role God created me for, and I do not fear what others think about it, or that it somehow makes me less important.

I am secure in who I am and am clear to finish my course with no regret.

Be the best you, and see yourself for who you are, a developing leader.

thanks
David

Royal Treatment

America’s orphans are Foster Kids. The bible says in James, that True religion is helping the widows and orphans. If we want to really be doing ministry it must include widows and orphans.

There are two reasons why a kid would be in foster care. Either they have been severely neglected or abused. Abuse could include physical, emotional, sexual, or mental. Neglect, could be not taking care of basic needs for your child or forcing the child to care for themselves and their siblings. We have seen some horrific situations. Although many times it is very necessary to remove a child from their home, but even that event is so traumatic, that many times the child thinks they have done something wrong, and thats why they are being removed.

How do we minister to these kids, who are in such desperate need of acceptance, love, and compassion. Many Foster Kids have no idea when there real birthday is. Many have clothes that have just been handed down several times. Many have lost all sense of the family construct. Many have been moved around so many times that they are behind in school. I once encountered a foster kid, who was in 10th grade and had been in 12 different school in his life time. You can imagine how this would effect him.

So how do we reach these kids, how do we connect with them. We have a big Christmas party for them and get them presents. We have the camp that is happening right now. its Royal Family Kids Camp. It is a camp that is based on Treating these kids like Royalty.

Many don’t know when their birthday is or have never had a b-day cake. So we throw them a giant birthday party, give each of them a cake and birthday presents.

many of the girls struggle with self esteem so we give them etiquette classes and put on a big Gala Dinner. Its called Princess Party. Each girl is dressed in a donated formal, they get a tiara, and they are announced as they come in the room, and they are escorted by a male counselor dressed in a suit and tie. Then they eat a really nice dinner and desert, and then they are told the story of Esther. She was a foster Kid, she was beautiful inside and out, and although she had bad circumstances God used her as a great leader just as he would like to use each of them. The point is they are very special to God and they need to know that. So the night is a beautiful night reinforcing to them how truly special they are.

We throw a big bonfire and trail story for the Boys. they love it and we end the night with smores.

The week is filled with so much fun, swimming, horse back riding, great chapel services, and so much more. Its just a way of showing them that they are loved, accepted and cared for.

Truthfully they are royalty, their Gods kids and He loves them, and with all these efforts that is what we are trying to get across to them. God loves them, and is there for them.

Its a great program, its a great opportunity, and it really does make a difference in the life of each camper.

So when you get a chance, do something nice for a foster Kid, for a foster parent, or for a dhs worker. Do something to help these kids that just need someone to look after them.

Thanks
David

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!

encouragement…

Well my marathon training is going well….I have to admit when I first started I was determined to do it, committed that before I turn 40 i will run a marathon, however in the back of my mind, i really didn’t know if I could do it.  Now I know I can.  I feel great and it keeps getting better.  I know this however, the reason I have kept going and will keep going is because of the partnership I have with my friend Andrew.  For example today on our four mile run there were a couple of times i was tired and wanted to stop, (didn’t get enough sleep) he just said, come on you can do it, we are almost there.

Its amazing how powerful those words are, “come on, you can do it!”  I just want to encourage everyone, you can make it, whatever you are trying to accomplish don’t quit, don’t give up, you may be tired, or restless or hurt, just don’t give up, you can make it.  One of the best ways to make it, is to find someone else you can cheer on.  Someone you can partner with to be an encouragement.

Encouragement is a powerful thing…try it, you’ll like it.

David

Take Your Place….

Being out of place is the most uncomfortable and disorienting feeling in the world. It steals our enthusiasm and frustrates our purpose. It can hurt us and others around us. On the other hand being in place is completely satisfying. There is peace when you are in the right place at the right time.

I think of it like a jigsaw puzzle. You have a beautiful picture on the outside of the box, which all the small pieces put together should make. We have, in the Bible, the picture of the purpose and life that God would have us to live. When we pray and seek God and put each one of those elements, seasons, gifts, talents and abilities together in the right place it culminates in the picture that is our God purposed life. The thing about the pieces to a puzzle is they have one place to fit. We can try to force a piece in but it will ruin that piece and the pieces around it, and ultimately the picture will not look like the front of the box.

Being out of place can bring loneliness, confusion, heartache, and apathy to the forefront in our lives. Moses is the biblical person I think of in this scenario. I think sometimes we put his life in a theatrical box and don’t really understand how he felt. The picture of Moses overall life is definitely the picture of a deliverer. The components of his life put together depict his purpose. His personality, his raising, his very name meant “to deliver” or to draw out.

He was raised in Pharaohs household, God’s way of training him for leadership, however because he was a Jew and Identified with his people, he felt out of place. His frustration and zeal combined to push him to act out that frustration. He struck a blow against tyranny and slavery, but was out of place and time for that blow to be struck. This forced him to run. He knew his actions were ill timed and as a result his life begin to spiral out of control. Was he to be Israel’s deliverer? Yes, but this was not the place or the time. God had not finished training him. Inexperience and immaturity will Cause us to act out of frustration even in the direction of our purpose it will put us out of place, as it did him.

Moses, then found himself on the back side of the desert. Even then we see him trying to be a deliverer. There were some young women trying to water their father’s flocks and were being bullied out of the way. Moses stepped in and stood up for them and brought them to the front of the line. He met his wife in that interaction and married, and took on the trade of his father in law. He became a shepherd.

It seems that Moses had resigned himself to his new life. The zeal to deliver seemed to be lost to him, and his people dead to him. We can deny our purpose, we can act like “our life is fine,” but in truth we are hurting and miserable. The way you see it in Moses is in the name of his child. In their culture your name many times held great meeting. Moses named his child just as his mother named him, except she named him in faith. She named him the future deliverer of his people. He named his child to declare his miserable state. He named him Gershom which means Expulsion, or a stranger there. He was practically screaming “I am out of place!” My life was not supposed to turn out like this. It’s not that he wasn’t happy with his wife, or his child, or even his life or occupation, what was missing was the God component, purpose.

It’s very interesting to me that he knew he was out of place, but when God called him, he made excuses, and asked God to get someone else. Sometimes even when we know we’re out of place and in our heart of hearts we’re miserable, missing that one God component, we still make excuses. I think we get comfortable. After all, my life’s not so bad; I have a great life, a good career, a great spouse, wonderful children, and good friends. No more excuses! It’s not about whether or not I have a great life or whether or not I enjoy my life, it is about whether or not I am fulfilling my purpose. We can’t get comfortable with life in the wrong place.

When Moses finally surrendered God gave him the courage to act on his purpose by delivering the Israelites out of the hand of Egypt. He broke the generations free from the shackles that held them. What significant thing is yet to happen as a result of your purpose or dream? It’s going to happen if we get in place. Moses wasn’t meant to be pharaoh’s son, nor was he to be just Jethro’s son in law the shepherd, He was meant to be Moses, the deliverer of the people of God. He found meaning when he found his right place. Find satisfaction, peace and the realization of God’s purpose in your life as you take your place.

David