Posts tagged ‘Dave Ramsey’

October 27, 2011

Take Me To Your Leader

by pastortimfowler

Who do you know that you would follow anywhere? Maybe a quick answer would be your spouse, but remember that I said anywhere. Would it be a policeman? How about your child? Now I want to ask, who would follow you anywhere and Why.
I am getting ready to read Dave Ramsey’s new book about leadership. It came highly recommended at a conference that I recently attended and because I like his approach to money and admire what he has done with his company, I want to see what he teaches about leadership. This is a subject that try to read at least a book or two a year about and I don’t think I can ever learn enough about the subject.
I often use the question, what kind of person must Jesus have been to have thousands of people follow Him into the wilderness without any food? Remember that they did not have drive-throughs, then, and restaurants were hard to come by in the wilderness. These people must have been crazy to follow a man they barely knew out into a hostile environment unless he had some pretty amazing qualities. This is the same man who told 12 men to follow Him and they left their jobs and did it for 3 years even though He continually told them that He was going to a cross to die.
As Christians, we are supposed to lead people to Jesus, and sadly, that does not happen with most of us in any great numbers. Sure, it is not an easy task in this present age, but I believe that there is one thing that is consistent that makes it easier, Jesus. He has not changed and He gives us the guidelines that allow this to happen. Maybe we should focus on those rather than what we are currently trying to do.
Leading others is something that takes a willingness to be bold and take the first step. But it also takes an ever-present awareness of watching the steps that we take as others are watching us. If we lead others in the wrong paths, who needs a leader? We must be willing to keep heading in the right direction even if people aren’t immediately following us. Sometimes people want to see if we believe that we are heading in the right direction before they tag along.
Another key to leading others and this is important, at least to me, is that they see joy in you as you head to where you are wanting to lead others. One of the promises of Jesus said that He would give us His joy. He did not say that he would make us happy or let us find joy, but rather He would give us the joy that He already had. To often I see Christians walking around as if they had lost their puppy or something. Even in church where we gather to worship, I see long faces and people afraid to act as if they believe that God is real. And after church if you go to a restaurant you will hear the church folks talking about long-winded preachers, bad music, and that hideous dress that she was wearing. To top it off, many waitresses will tell you that Sundays are their worst days for tips. Oh yeah, baby, follow me to life eternal! Where is the joy?
Leadership is not limited to CEO’s and Government officials and pastors. If you are a Christian you should take the lead. An old friend of mine once said that you only have to be one step ahead to lead. The challenge is to act like we want others to follow. Most people like the spotlight of leadership when there is a title and a pay-check involved, but Jesus tells us that the treasures in this world will go away, but the treasure in heaven are never-ending.
If you had to lead someone to a place that was as miserable as the wilderness of Israel, and you had no food, you had better be a dynamic person. Jesus was. But He did not say lead people to the wilderness, He said to lead them to Heaven, via Him. If McD’s was giving away free Big Macs and fries to everyone that you brought to them, you would have no problem putting on the smile and enthusiastically having people follow you there, even if it were the one across town. Jesus offers the Bread of life and Living Water and a place to stay in His mansion for all eternity to everyone you bring to Him. And, you won’t have to lead them far. Just take them to the cross.

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July 14, 2011

Procrastination: No, Its Been Raining!

by pastortimfowler

Yesterday it rained very hard here. So hard in fact that water found ways into my house that normally don’t allow water in. In my living room, there was enough water that came in that I used every towel we had, and then remembered that I had a wet/dry vac. Funny how you forget what you have when there is an urgent situation happening, but when you are walking through Home Depot you think of every impossible situation in order to justify buying that new toy.
I have been talking for weeks about doing a few things around the house that I knew could cause some problems, but it is hard to do yard work when it seems to rain every afternoon. Throw in a sore back and a busy schedule and it adds up to Murphy’s Law at my house. And we have known from the day we bought this house that there were a few things that needed some attention.
We bought this house shortly after we moved up here 9 years ago. Our intention was to do a few things to it and then rent it out and buy a newer home. This one is very old and shows its age. So we never had a great sense of urgency to do a lot, and when you plan to do things bit by bit, something always seems to distract you until it rains really hard and you remember why you said the first thing you need to do is cut that tree and replace those windows.
Now that nine years have passed and fortunately this was one of the few disasters that we have had due to the age of the house, I am making a new list of priorities. We have grown to like the house, despite its age and flaws. It is small and easy to maintain, as long as we do the maintenance. But I will be getting rid of that tree and a few bushes. Thanks to the weather, I may get the roof replaced too. Those windows have got to be changed and now I think I will have some new flooring put in. While I am at it I need to paint, and put on some new siding, replace those doors on the closet, fixed that toilet that you have to jiggle, and my sidewalk needs a section replaced.
We have been using Dave Ramsey’s financial teaching on getting out of debt and managing our money. He says to save for things like this. So I am pretty sure I can afford to cut those bushes down and trim back that tree. I can afford a tube of caulk for that old window, and we never really use that closet door anyway. I do have a pretty good habit of jiggling the toilet and have never fell over that crack in the sidewalk. If the insurance covers the roof and I wait on the siding, and that floor isn’t that bad, I can get everything done in a few weeks, if it will just stop raining every afternoon.