Hungry Wolves

by Ray Reuter on November 16, 2017

A grandfather is talking with his grandson and he says there are two wolves inside of us which are always at war with each other. One of them is a good wolf which represents things like kindness, bravery and love. The other is a bad wolf, which represents things like greed, hatred and fear.

The grandson stops and thinks about it for a second then he looks up at his grandfather and says, “Grandfather, which one wins?”

The grandfather quietly replies, the one you feed.

This tale does not require much additional commentary. Both wolves are inside each of us — we are made that way. Both wolves are hungry and howl for attention. Which one do you feed?

Knowing that death is certain and that the time of death is uncertain, what’s the most important thing?  —Pema Chodron

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Pencil Lead

by Ray Reuter on November 2, 2017

Leadership is the ability to not only understand and utilize your innate talents, but to also effectively leverage the natural strengths of your team to accomplish the mission. There is no one-size-fits-all approach, answer key, or formula to leadership. Leadership should be the humble, authentic expression of your unique personality in pursuit of bettering whatever environment you are in. – Katie Christy, founder, Activate Your Talent

A parable is told about a pencil-maker who was preparing to put an important pencil in a box. Before doing so, though, he took the pencil aside. “There are five things you need to know,” he said. “If you can remember these five things, you will become the best pencil you can be.”

  1. You will be able to do many great things, but only if you allow yourself to in someone else’s hand.
  2. Sharpening is painful, but it is critical if you want to write sharply.
  3. Since you have an eraser, you can correct most mistakes you make, though some may be harder to erase than others.
  4. Remember, it’s what’s inside that’s most important.
  5. Whatever surface you on, make sure you leave your mark. No matter how hard, rough, or easy … you must continue to write.

This parable shares powerful lessons for every leader:

  1. Be humble. You can achieve greatness, but not when you go it alone. Allow yourself to be taught and coached by others and identify the strengths of those around you to help advance the cause.
  2. Stay sharp. Strong leaders find ways to keep learning and sharpening their skills. Feedback can be painful at times, but without it, you will become dull.
  3. Accept mistakes. We all err. Though mistakes may make for challenging moments, they are ultimately part of a process of becoming a better leader. Embrace your mistakes as opportunities to learn, erase, and become better! As John Maxwell once said, “A good leader is a person who takes a little more than his share of the blame and a little less than his share of the credit.”
  4. Your best is what’s inside you. You may be good-looking, dress well, and have a great personality. But what makes you who you are and the person with whom others want to connect is your character. Seek to continually grow and refine your character so that you can lead and serve with utmost integrity.
  5. Stick with it. There will be times when you think that you’re making no imprint and that your actions are not having an effect. But people will still depend on you, so you need to keep on going. Hold to your vision and your dreams, even when it seems they have dimmed.

Each of one us is a leader as we have the ability to influence others to do great things.

Leadership is not easy. It takes much effort to position yourself to achieve a leadership post, and perhaps, even more, work to build a sustainable leadership platform. But it is doable … and the world needs you.

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Grasping Irony

October 26, 2017

“Though He (Jesus) was in the form of God, He (Jesus) did not regard equality with God as something to be grasped.” Phil 2:6 I am finding myself grasping to be God. It is a significant temptation for me. I want security, predictability, safety, certainty, stability. In essence, I want to control, I want to […]

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Wisdom from The Shack

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 […]

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Culture of Discipline

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 […]

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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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