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Daddy, I Miss You

16 Jun

A clergyman walking down a country lane saw a young farmer struggling to load some hay back onto a cart after it had fallen off.

“You look hot,” the pastor said. “Why don’t you rest a moment and I’ll give you a hand.”

“No thanks,” the young man said. “My father wouldn’t like it.”

“Don’t be silly,” the pastor said. “Everyone is entitled to a break. Come on. Let’s take a break for a drink of water.”

“NO!” the farmer said. “My dad will be upset!

“Losing his patience, the clergyman said, “Your father must be a real slave driver. Tell me… where is he? I want to give him a piece of my mind!”

“Well,” Jack said, “he’s under the hay!”

I needed that LOL today because I’m a little melancholy. I probably shouldn’t write about anything sad in a LOL blog, but the bare truth is, I miss my Dad. Maybe some of you are going through the same thing.

Daddy is in heaven and I know he is safe with Jesus, but I long to throw my arms around his neck and hug him.

I wish I could tell him again how much he meant to my life.

~ He sacrificed much so I could go to Bible college.

~ He taught me right from wrong.

~ He always encouraged me to be a woman of wisdom and integrity.

~ He helped me understand what to look for in a husband:  stability and worthy character.

Though he was often away in the military, when he was home, he was our family’s rock. It simply hurts that he is not with us anymore ~ gone too soon. But I am comforted by sweet memories.

I’m not the only child who misses a dad, of course. I’m thinking of all the daughters and sons who have lost their fathers in recent days … to war … to cancer or a heart attack … to Alzheimer’s and a host of other terrible things.

I’m also thinking about the children whose dads are alive but aren’t around either physically or emotionally to meet their families’ needs ... and this video describes that pain.

My dad will always be my first hero. He protected me, provided for me, loved me, and gave me early opportunities to get to know about the Father in Heaven who has cared for me all the years since Daddy died.

My Heavenly Father now protects me (Psalm 32:7; 121:4-8), provides for me (Philippians 4:19-20) and loves me (1 John 4:19). He has comforted me all these years, and given me purpose and power for living. And someday, I’ll go to live in the Father’s house (John 14:2-3).

I pray that everyone who hurts on this Father’s Day will know and be encouraged by the love of the Father above. We still miss our dads, but it’s wonderful to know that we can rest secure in the Father’s loving arms.

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Communication Skills for Leaders

11 Jun

Jethro visited the lumber yard and asked for some “four-by-twos.” Stack of Lumber

The clerk at the lumbar yard said, “You mean two-by-fours?”

Jethro said,  “Just a moment. I’ll check.” He went back to his car where his friends were sitting. They rolled down the windows and they had a short conversation. Jethro returned and answered, “Yes, I mean two-by-fours.”

Then the clerk asked him, “How long do you want them?”

Jethro said, “Just a minute. I’ll check.” He again conferred with his friends in the car for a couple of minutes, and returned to the merchant.

“A lo-o-o-o-o-ng time,” Jethro said. “We’re building a house.” *

Talk about miscommunication!

Poor communication can result in POOR RELATIONSHIPS. Bill and Pam Farrel, relationship specialists, write about communication in many of their books ~ especially communication in marriage. For example, in their book Men Are Like Waffles, Women Are Like Spaghetti (pages 35-37), they emphasize that Listening is not…

  • an attempt to understand the opposite sex,
  • an attempt to become each other’s counselor,
  • an attempt to fix your partner, or
  • a personality trait.

I (Dawn) highly recommend the Farrels books if you want to improve your relationships. They are a wealth of wise counsel. A list of their books is at love-wise.com.

Communication is also one of the Christian’s strongest tools in ministry (joined by compassion and commitment). Poor communication can result in POOR MINISTRY.

Kenneth Boa wrote about communication skills  in an article for Bible.org. Here are a few of his points about communication that affect leaders:

  • “A leader who cannot communicate will not lead well or long….. those who wish to be good leaders will develop [the] skill [of listening].” (Proverbs 18:13)
  • “Closely tied in with the skill of listening is the ability to express oneself in a nonabrasive and affirming manner.” (Proverbs 12:18)
  • “…wise leaders think before they speak; in so doing, they select words that nurture rather than destroy.” (Proverbs 15:1; James 1:19-20)
  • “Your degree of ability to communicate will either evoke trust or distrust in those you lead. It will instill either confidence or fear. It will determine to a large extent how eagerly your followers will follow you.”
  • “Effective communication involves more than just speaking and hearing. Real communication only takes place when both parties move beyond speaking and hearing to understanding.”
  • Proverbs 18:2 demonstrates that the one-sided communicator comes off looking foolish. But look now at verse 13:  ‘He who answers before listening ~ that is his folly and his shame.’ A leader must also hear before answering ~ that’s essential…. In order to be truly effective, that leader must also listen and respond with a mind that is open and searching for a fuller meaning. Then and only then can effective two-way communication begin to take place.” Continue reading
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