Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Are You Building A Life Team? Or Wasting Your Lifetime?

I remembered many years back when I first met Dr. Robb Thompson, he taught me a profound and valuable lesson when I sent him to airport one day. I asked him, "Dr. T, if there's only ONE THING that you would like to impart to me from all the principles that you've taught us? What will it be?".

He replied, with a smile... "Build your life team". I don't fully understand. So I asked him to explained to me.

He then shared with me stories about many great men and women of God that he knew, whom have spent their whole life ministering to people, building huge ministries, attempted great things for God.

However, in their old age, they are lonely. They sat on the rocking chairs, eyesight are blurred, ears can hardly hear, voice turned cranky, though they had never regret a life well-lived fulfilling God's calling. However, many wondered, will there ever be anyone visiting them today, any phone calls, any postcards showing gratuities for the things they've done for the people they have ministered to all these years. Where are they? Do they remember you? Who is going to walk through the journey with you? Where are your friends?

I stood there starring at him, I told him. Nodded. "Pastor, I get what you mean..."

Another year, he's back again to minister to us. This time, I had the chance to spend time with his PA, Justin Kane. I asked him the same question, he gave me the exact same answers. And he shared with me the people in his life team, and taught me how to select people to be in your inner circle, spend them investing in their lives, these are the people that will run with you all your life, people that is like family members to you, or com rads. Someone that you know and you know, one day when the sky falls down on you, they will be there to hold it up for you. Someone that knows you and still loves you the same. Someone that holds you accountable for your life.

He shared with me the people in his life team. Mentors, disciples, friends. Not too many, but enough for him to focus on building meaningful relationship with. I've learned a great lesson. And pondered upon this wisdom shared, it's indeed important.

I've got my life team sorted out after a season of prayers and observations. The list may change, as people changes. But I do hope that these people that I'm investing into would continue to stay in the life team together, supporting each other, and spurring each other to live out the destiny that God has for us all.

This is then truly a life well lived, a meaningful one that not only fulfil the call of God to serve Him but also having a real and fulfilling relationships in this journey of LIFE.

What about you? Are you building your life team? or are you busy building an empire that only you alone resides in it?

(This Blog Is Being Migrated Over From http://shirleyboon.multiply.com/journal/item/43)

Saturday, March 12, 2011

LET’S BUILD MEANINGFUL RELATIONSHIPS!

A special feature article written for CHCKL BULLETIN Feb 26-27, 2011.

Over the past 10 years of being in the Pastoral ministry, I realize that one of the best ways to impact lives is by investing our time and energy to build meaningful relationships with people around us. I’ve learnt that being ‘relational’ doesn't mean you’re building meaningful relationship’.

Very often we become too occupied with tasks, events and even our ‘ministries’ and neglect building genuine relationships with the people around us. Thus, though many are still actively serving and striving for achievements, they are actually suffering silently from loneliness and rejection behind their masks of busyness.

Nobody is meant to be a loner, especially when you’re in this cool church! ☺

Here are 10 things I’ve learnt in my life that I’m trying my best to apply daily:

1. Learn To Communicate With Openness
A ‘Relationship breakdown’ is usually due to the lack of communication and too much of assumptions. Openness is one of the keys to build meaningful relationship. Learn to share your heart openly and communicate your thoughts in order to clarify, connect (understand) and then only conclude a matter.

2. Say No to Gossip!
Very often a ‘get-together’ or ‘hangout’ session can easily turn into a gossip party. We gotta be watchful of this deadly habit! If you really have to discuss about someone else (where most of the time is none-of-your-business), be sure your discussion is out of love and provides solutions for him/her to be a better person!

3. Cease to Judge Or Criticize
There are too many judges around us! Everyone likes to play ‘judge’, but only God is our judge, so let the others be silent. Judgment and criticism are simply seeing yourself as superior. Stop judging and learn to put grace on your lips by praising and encouraging others!

4. Don't Be Jealous, Be Zealous!
Jealousy can burn down a house. It destroys beautiful relationships. Guard your heart and do not allow comparison, competition and jealousy to creep into your life and caus you to turn into a selfish beast. Learn to celebrate joys and successes with others! Be zealous in love.

5. Let’s Be Real. Nobody likes a ‘fake’.
If everyone is relating to each other behind a mask, then all relationships are superficial. No wonder there are so many lonely souls out there! Let’s be real to each other. If they can’t accept you for who you really are, then what’s the point of having them in your life anyway? Take off your mask today!

6. Kick Out The ‘Offenses’
Keeping offenses in your heart is like having a bullet in your soul. Let me warn you that keeping offenses is highly destructive. It can even destroy a strong relationship if it is not dealt with soon enough. The way to remove offenses is to forgive as Christ has forgiven you. Remember, it is a choice!

7. They are not YOU, you are not THEM
Never impose your standards on others. You are not God. Have you met people where only their standards are ‘THE’ standards? It’s stressful hanging out with such people. We can’t expect everyone to like what we like because everyone is unique! We should celebrate diversity and appreciate uniqueness. If you think this is cool and they don't think so, love them anyway! ☺

8. Walk The Talk – Show Love and Empathy!
Yes! “Show” it with actions and not just your words. The best sermons preached are those sermons applied. Talk is cheap… living it may cost you everything. Let’s not become too mechanical in the way we care and love others. Let’s be human! Learn to empathize with them and you will win them over because there are indeed not many who ‘truly care’.

9. Putting Others First!
Has anyone told you yet? You’re NOT the center of the universe! Therefore, don't just think about yourself all the time. Abstain from the selfishness that dresses itself in many disguises. If you can start dying to yourself, you can then start living for others. Learn to esteem others better than yourself!

10. I Believe In You!
Believing in people is a great way to build meaningful relationship. I don't believe in building relationship by just ‘scratching the surface’. Go into that person’s life and minister to him/her is the best way to get connected. Don't condemn anyone. Learn to believe in people (with wisdom and discernment), you will win many friends.

Remember, success is not determined by how much money and fame you possess but by the fruits of meaningful relationships you’ve cultivated. The rich and famous may one day still die a lonely man.

So, let’s cultivate fresh love in our hearts and work on our relationships with one another. We are only as strong as our weakest link!



Why don't you make it your aim this year to restore broken relationships & start building meaningful relationships!

Love God, Love people, Love life!
Shirley Boon