Monday, March 31, 2008

How to Change

This Sunday, Kem and I visited Summit Church led by Isaac Hunter in Orlando, FL. It was great to see some old peeps and hear some great, practical steps to initiate change in one's life. Isaac talked about the three components that need to be in place for change to occur quoting from some of Dallas Willard's works (all three need to be in place for effective change):
  • Vision of who you are, what could be...

  • Intentions: Having a plan to play out that vision and be that vision

  • Practical, visible, actionable steps to carry it out

He used a great analogy of a treadmill to our personal growth/faith... You can have a vision to get in shape (You buy a treadmill), you can have intentions of actually using the treadmill (You map out a time, plan, and even have a chart in place to log your times and dates).... but if you never get on the treadmill, actually do the workout... change doesn't happen.. Vision and intentions alone are not enough... Would you then look at the treadmill and say, well that didn't work, I guess I'll return it...?

The same can apply to our personal faith, I can believe I'm a child of God, I can write out a plan of how I'm going to spend time in the Bible, small groups, going to church, serving, etc.. But if I don't actually get off my rear and "be" the plan- can I begin experience God and the inside-out change that can occur in my life? Would I simply say- "Ah, that God-thing just didn't cut it, or man, I just feel like the same person, nothing is changing in me..." when I haven't actually done anything to initiate that change? Like the treadmill, a vision of who we are in Christ and good intentions don't cut it to see inward change in my life- Am I reading my Bible, pressing in with conversations with friends, reading books, going to church regularly, giving my money, praying...? The reverse is true as well.... a bunch of "actions" without a clear vision of who you are in Christ can turn into a "rules" list or a bunch of good "works" without clarity of who you are in Him...

This can apply across the board in business, ministry, personal faith, eating plans, and being a good spouse or parent.

It's not easy, but some things I am working to do:

  • Share my vision and plans with others, get feedback, schedule times with these key people to talk about how I'm doing or not doing

  • I'm keeping track of my list of books I read this year- 12 is my minimum, I hope for much more- I try to read in areas I want to continue to stretch, learn, or improve-

  • I measure my progress in my Outlook calendar weekly- this is where I "live" in my day to day activities-

  • For more, I recently whiteboarded my life to work on my vision/plan (intentions)

Thanks Isaac for the great reminders and encouragement to press on- I love seeing other churches that "get-it" and are about revolutionizing today's "Christian" and what it should mean... more on this later...

4 comments:

Rob Wegner said...

Mark,

Hope you guys are having a great time. I subscribe to a podcast called Veritas Forum. I was listening this week and thought of you. Check out this two part series call the Dawkins Delusion
http://www.veritas.org/media/talks/532
Presentation is very dry. But the content is great.

Rob Wegner said...

By the way, I'm thinking of using this same outline for a message at New Community in a few weeks. Isaac must be listening to John Ortberg and Dallas Willard too! :)

Kristin Baker said...

Sounds like you guys are having a blast (minus Kim's bathroom pic on her blog). Hey, jeff has a great opportunity for you coming up for a media in the next series. you're going to love it (probably not as much as Florida warmth, but a close second).

amberWIRE said...

So great to hear some of Isaac's thoughts! Thanks for posting and say hi to the fam for me!