Saturday, January 14, 2006

People Who Make You Better

One of the things I have been learning during the past year is to hang around people who make you better. People who challenge you. People who make you think and who think with you. People who, when you work together, synergy happens.

My friend Maria is an excellent example. I had been struggling with summer themes and helping young adults understand grace at a whole new level. Maria came and spent a few hours over a long lunch and an idea session with me and we worked out a lot of what to teach this summer at the LJ youth events and how to teach it. She took my ideas and compounded them, enhanced then and allowed the explode with potential. My other friends, Rob and Emilie, are working on creating a teaching atmosphere and set design that will bring the young people into the environment. My friend Danelle is helping me learn a whole new set of young adult teaching and coaching skills as well as providing a whole new set of group building games. All of these people understand my passion to help young people experience God at a whole new level and share some of that passion in their own area of expertise. They get it! What I provide them is an opportunity to create something completely new with a spiritual underpinning that could affect young people and their churches across the southeast and beyond. It is true that you are defined by those you hang around. The cool thing is all of these people are way ahead of me in a myriad of areas but the choose to hang out with me to see what God’s gonna do next.

Isn’t that why the disciples hung out with Jesus. They wanted to be defined by the ultimate rabbi. They knew of his teachings, they knew he would challenge them at a whole new level. I’m not sure they had any idea that he would push them to amazing levels such that the movement they started would eventually change the world, reconstruct reality and redefine faith.

Choose who you hang out with carefully. Choose people who challenge you and your ideas. Who push your reality and make you think. Change in you is usually caused by change in your concepts of reality and how you think about it. That change comes by hanging out with people who push you to see clearer and farther. I only hope that I push others and add value to them the way they do to me. Praise God for friends who love you enough to push…I remain:

Lost in Grace,


Gracious God, thank you for those who push me to live a better life for You. Let me be the friend that pushes them to pursue their God-shaped destiny with passion. In the name of the ultimate Rabbi and teacher, Jesus, I pray. Amen

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