Monday, August 13, 2007

Lots of Learning

I have been sitting under the teaching of some great leaders the past couple of days at the leadership conference held by Willow Creek Association. Our church is a satellite site. I find myself in leadership type positions, but don’t ever plan on being in official church leadership. I am the kind of person that likes to soak in the wisdom of others in order to find a bit of truth that will teach me more about God and who I should be in Him.

Here is a couple things that stuck out:

Bill Hybels, senior pastor at Willow Creek, opened the conference with a talk called “A Vision to die for”. He shared from John 10, where Jesus is comparing the hired hands to the owners of the sheep. The owners are willing to die for the sheep while the hired hands will run away. He shared his method of creating an atmosphere of ownership.

Marcus Buckingham, author of “Now Discover Your Strengths”, spoke about strengths. This really intrigued me. It turns out that we spend lots of time trying to improve in our weak areas instead of working in our strengths. He had worked for Gallup and had a lot of poll data to back up these thoughts. This was one of my favorite speakers this week. I am trying to find his book and put it on my to read list.
3 Myths
1. As you grow, your personality changes. False. As you grow, you become more of who you are already.
2. You’ll grow most in your areas of weaknesses. False. You grow the most where you are strongest.
3. A great team member puts his strengths aside for the sake of the team. Wrong. A great team finds the strengths of its volunteers and uses them for the sake of the team.

Micheal Porter, expert on competitive strategy. I was not looking forward to hearing him, but found his point of view about how non-profits us there money fascinating. He really suggested defining a goal and determining what to do to solve that problem. Then, we need to get the most value for our money and time.
For example: Provide homes for the homeless. Get volunteers, supplies and build a house for $150k or just pay an expert (contractor) $75K?
Very thought provoking.

John Ortberg, pastor, author and speaker. He is one of my favorites and to hear him speak was a real treat. He used the book of Esther to talk about our “other” missions that sometimes get in the way of the real mission that God has in mind for us. He called these a “shadow mission”. He said that everyone has one. You can tell it is a shadow mission – because you are never satisfied. Truly wonderful.

I can’t possible capture in this short post all the inspiration I got from hearing wise leaders speak. I am invigorated to go and serve – truly believing that my mission to teach is before me.

Blessings and thanks for reading!


Connie@Little Red Hearts From God said...

Who knows-- one day someone may say, I sat under Cyndee's great teachings...

what a wonderful heart and attitude you have


Liza's Eyeview said...

Our church staff attends Willow Creek Leadership Conference every now and then. Yes, they come home invigorated and ready to serve with passion and power. I'm glad you were able to attend too .