Tuesday, June 28, 2016

A.W.I.P. Life Courses

          As “A Work in Progress” we should all be life long learners.  From being a business person to a stay at home parent we can all earn "On the Job Life Training" degrees, however the subject of study may be as unusual as the lessons.  If there were courses offered from "On the Job Life Training" (OTJLT...really did I have to go there?...yes, yes I did) they might look something like these: 
  • Patience 101:  You can look forward to hours of standing in lines, driving slow in the fast lane (due to purposefully following those special drivers that do not understand highway vs residential speed zones), and "not watching movies" as you sit in front of the children that would have rather been at a soccer game so they use kicking your seat as a way to cope. This class will develop a fruitful behavior of waiting with an internal and external smile.  The final exam will be announced....soon.
  • Pride: (SORRY FULL) this session is reserved for everyone else, but you. However, if you choose to, you are invited to attend the study sessions, but we ask that you remain silent and just listen and observe.
  • Selflessness, with a lab of Humble: This course comes with bonus prizes, which all must be given away. The lab is a study of Oscar acceptance speeches and the bizarre behavior of the red carpet treatment.
  • Elective....Honesty Retreat: This four day campsite tests your skills by putting you in situations where you must speak the truth in love. Talent shows filled with people that lack specific gifts and you get to tell them – in love – that they need work harder or that they need to take up another hobby. Extra credit...at the going home party you will receive gifts, which you really will not like, and you must thankfully accept each one with out telling any "little white lies" just to make someone feel good.
  • Advanced Study of Leadership: Spend a year, not in a foreign country but in a volunteer organization. Build influence, not through your title, but by lifting the value of others. Prerequisites include: being teachable, but not perfect, and walking in integrity.
            For many years I thought that if I admitted that I was a "Work in Progress" that my career door would shut. The truth is that there is some truth to that. What I mean is that in many careers, especially consulting and competitive ones, there are many individuals who use, what can appear to be, the weaknesses of others to elevate their own agendas.  But there is an element to this equation that took me years to discover and that is:  that we are ALL “A Work in Progress”!  God is just waiting to promote those who walk the walk with Him, not perfectly, but consistently.   If we strive to be consistently in the process of developing to the next level and confidently walk in a "teachable spirit" we will learn and grow without being hindered by our own limitations.

So, here is to...

The mom who forgot to unload the washer for the second time and has to rewash the load yet again; loses her patience with her children as they wrestle in the clothes, laying on her bed, that should have been folded hours ago. Then she counts to ten and jumps into the miss-matched socks and wrinkled shirts to embrace the precious moment.

The boss who points out all the bad decisions his team made causing him to miss a deadline. Then as he looks into their faces he admits that he should have been a better leader and rallies the team to work together for the next project.

The working woman who honks at traffic, because she is frustrated that she had to stay late at the office, again and miss another moment with her children. Taking a breath and asking God for help she makes it home in time to enjoy a tickle fight with her children and a hug from her understanding husband.

The dad who, after a long day, walks through the front door grabbing the baby from his exhausted wife thinking - I really need a break. Then as he looks at a toothless grin and a smile of relief from his love, he embraces the moment and feels like the king of his home.

            We can all move forward and become successful and more importantly fulfilled when we embrace that we are clearly “A Work in Progress”. Making mistakes is not the issue, admitting we never make them could be. Living and growing comes through learning. No matter what position we hold when we admit that we have a long way to go God can help us get from where we are to where He knows that we can be!

"That the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work."
 (2 Tim. 3:17 NKJV)

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