Wisdom from The Shack

by Kaizen on October 19, 2017

Whether or not you are a fan of the book / movie, “The Shack” … there is some beautiful, thought-provoking wisdom in this story. I want to share my favorites. The emphasis is mine.

Jesus: When all you see is your pain, you lose sight of me.

Mack: Because of you, she’s gone. Until you change that, I will never be free.
Papa: The truth sets everyone free, and He’s in the woodshed covered in saw dust.

Papa: No Mack, you misunderstand the mystery… Don’t ever think what costs my son didn’t cost me, too. Love always leaves a mark. I never left Him. I never left you. I never left Missy.

Papa: Birds are created to fly. You, on the other hand, were created to be loved. Living unloved is like clipping a bird’s wings. … This is why you’re here, Mackenzie. This is your flying lesson.

Papa: Dreams are important. They can be a way of opening a window, letting the bad air out.

Mack: Everybody knows you punish the people who disappoint you.
Papa: No. Sin is its own punishment. … I’m in the middle of everything you see [as a mess], working for your good.

Papa: Mackenzie, you’re trying to make sense of your world… The real flaw in your life is that you don’t think that I am good.

Sarayu: Yes, [the garden is a mess]. It’s wild and wonderful and perfectly in process. This mess is you.

Jesus: Religion is way too much work. I don’t want slaves. I want friends. Family.

Wisdom: God didn’t cause it.
Mack: He didn’t stop it.
Wisdom: He (God) doesn’t stop a lot of things that cause Him pain… You want a promise of a pain-free life… [It’s not possible] as long as there’s free will.

Mack: Please don’t [take me there].
Papa: Son, we are on a healing trail to bring closure to this part of your journey.
Mack: I want to hurt him…
Papa: I know you do, but he is my son, too, and I want to redeem him.
Mack: So, you want to let him get away with it?
Papa: Nobody gets away with anything. Trust me to do what’s right. The pain inside you is crippling you, robbing you of [healing] and joy.
Mack: I’m still angry!
Papa: Of course you are! No one lets go all at once.


Culture of Discipline

by Kaizen on October 12, 2017

Vice Admiral James Stockdale was shot down during the Vietnam War. He spent seven and a half years in a brutal prison camp. He spent four of those years in solitary confinement and two years in leg irons. He was tortured fifteen times.

Stockdale heroically embraced his role as the clandestine commanding officer of what became hundreds of prisoners.

In his book Good to Great Jim Collins tells us about what he called “The Stockdale Paradox.”

Stockdale said that naive optimism got you killed in those camps. Some guys thought they’d get out by Christmas. When Christmas came and went they thought they’d get out by Easter. When Easter came and went it was Thanksgiving. Then… Then, they lost hope. And died.

Stockdale told us the ones who survived did something different.

They KNEW (!!!) that they would eventually be free and they KNEW (!!!) it was not going to happen any time soon. Stockdale himself knew it would be at least 5 years. But, he knew the day would come.

The Stockdale Paradox.

Utter confidence in our inevitable success and utter eyes-wide-open humble embrace of reality that it isn’t going to happen immediately and/or be easy.

As Stockdale puts it: “This is a very important lesson. You must never confuse faith that you will prevail in the end—which you can never afford to lose—with the discipline to confront the most brutal facts of your current reality, whatever they might be.”

That’s the heart and soul of true confidence.


Power in Your Hands

October 5, 2017

High in the Himalayan mountains lived a wise old man. Every so often, he ventured down into the nearby village to entertain the locals with his special knowledge and talents. One of his skills was to use psychic powers to tell the villagers the contents in their pockets, boxes, or minds. A few young boys […]

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A Call to Your Imagination

September 28, 2017

The imagination of little ones is amazing. There really are no boundaries. Anything is possible. Anything is believable. Their imagination is unfettered. As we grow up and “mature,” our imagination never goes away. However, it is easy to suppress or discount or censor our imagination. That may sound like in our minds … “That’s not […]

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How Many Chairs

September 21, 2017

Two pastors are talking, one of a fast-growing church, and another, a more seasoned pastor. The first pastor was telling the story of how the church had exploded, how they couldn’t stop the growth, how it was utterly out of their control, an inexplicable, unstoppable phenomenon. The seasoned pastor pushed him gently: “You’ve built this, […]

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The Road Less Fettered (#14)

September 14, 2017

The Road Less Fettered has been traveled before by many wise and wonderful people. Below are six more of my favorite quotes that are worth pondering and lead to unfettering … There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is […]

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Knowing God’s Will

September 7, 2017

You already know the will of God. Thessalonians 5:16-18 simply states … “Rejoice always. Pray continually. Give thanks in all circumstances.” We (I) get so bent out of shape and try so hard to figure out God’s will because we (I) think the will of God is circumstantial. The truth is the will of God is […]

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Work on YOUR Business

August 31, 2017

Many have heard the advice to work ON our business not just IN our business. The emphasis is always on the word “ON.” I totally agree with this intention, and I want to take a moment to emphasize a different word … “YOUR.” Work on YOUR business. Byron Katie notes that there are three different […]

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A Centuries Old Leadership Manifesto

August 24, 2017

I am definitely a raving fan of Ignatian Spirituality and ran across this description of the leadership qualities that Ignatius looked for when he founded the Jesuits close to 500 years ago (1539). What a beautiful leadership manifesto for all of us to embrace as we are all called to lead and influence others. Someone […]

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Fear Setting

August 17, 2017

One of the primary components of unfettering is setting goals / priorities. What do you want for yourself? What matters most? Tim Ferriss has an interesting twist on this concept, which is an exercise called Fear Setting. Tim credits this exercise for everything he has achieved in his life as well as all the disasters […]

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