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Questions to ask as the year ends

I love the end of the year. Not only is it one of the most festive times of the year, it is also a time when I reflect over the previous months and prepare for the coming year. It is very difficult to make adjustments in direction if you don’t know where you have been. Being realistic about what has taken place will help you in your evaluation.

One of the hurdles to doing this is knowing where to begin. Sometimes looking back over 12 months can be overwhelming and so we just don’t. Asking some specific questions can help eliminate some the clutter in your mind and help you focus on the things that are most important. These questions will bring clarity to the year ahead and help you identify places where changes are needed.

Where did I spend the most time?

This is a key indicator of what is important to you, or at least what consumes that majority of your efforts. This may be a career or the responsibility of parenting, but there are usually only a few top competitors for your time. There are probably a few things overlooked when thinking about how you spend your time as well. Things like social media and television often take up way more time than you realize. Participation in hobbies or service organizations can also rank high on the list. Identifying where you are spending your time will often provide insight as to what things need changing and how to better prioritize your time. You might be surprised by what is actually getting your attention.

Where did I spend the most money?

This is a simple thing to check. You may already be using some type of personal financial tool like Mint or Quicken, that will quickly tell you how you spend your money. If not, a few minutes scanning through bank or credit card statements will let you know where your resources are going. If there are a lot of ATM withdrawals, it might be a sign that money is being wasted. If where you are spending money is not something you look at regularly, you may notice that there are significant resources being used in places you don’t consider important. Small changes to your financial practices can yield large long-term results and significant short-term improvements for the coming year.

Where did I have the most impact?

This question is a little more subjective than the others. The frustrating thing with impact is that typically the influence you have had will only show up later. This may be an impact on your children or immediate family. It could be your career or an organization where you serve. It might be in your community or for a team you coach. All of us are having some type of impact. Sometimes it is positive and sometimes it is negative. None of us, however, are neutral. We are moving the needle one way or the other. When you realize where you are making the most impact, it might help you identify where you should be spending more of your time and resources.

How is my health?

Neglecting to spend time and resources to take care of your health can be deadly. Some of the more important health factors to consider when you reflect include your weight, blood pressure and stress levels. Exercise duration and intensity as well as taking time to rest play an important role too. You may be struggling with your health because some of the other areas such as time and money are not being allocated properly. Poor health can limit the time you can commit to your priorities and can also cause you to spend money unnecessarily. Knowing where you are with your health will help you set goals to improve it.

How is my family life?

Nothing creates more stress than trouble in your immediate family. I see this most often in marriages, but there can also be stress in taking care of aging parents or just being parents. Is trust strong in these relationships? Is there open and honest communication? Are you spending quality time together? Your family life has influence on all of these other topics of reflections – your time, money, impact and health.  A strong family life is a key indicator that you are probably doing well in these other areas.

How is my spiritual life?

If you are not a person of faith, this may not interest you. If you are a person who claims faith, spiritual life should be important to you. It should be an area that gets time, money and influence. You should be growing spiritually by spending time with others of like faith, studying your Bible and praying. When your time is taken by too many other things, your spiritual life can suffer. Deficiencies in this area can often have an affect on all your other relationships. Taking a spiritual inventory should be part of every year-end review and included in plans for the coming year.

Maybe you have other questions you think are important. Whatever questions you use, the process of reflecting and reviewing will give you great insight on how you can make the coming year better.

It’s OK to Change Your Mind

There is a flaw in culture that ridicules people who change their mind. We have names for them.  If they are a politician, we call them a flip-flopper. We say those people have no standards or no backbone. We accuse them of being weak or soft. We label them as terrible leaders or bandwagon fans. But what is the problem with someone changing their mind?

One of the struggles most people have is that they hate change. We like things to be consistent, even if it is not the best option. When it comes to changing our mind, we are usually more concerned about what other people will think than we are about whether we are right or wrong. Because culture puts so much pressure on us to be right and often disdains people who change their mind, we sometimes relegate ourselves to a position with which we are uncomfortable simply to avoid the uncomfortableness of the pressure and disdain.

I want to challenge you to get past what others think and be willing to change your mind. As a matter of fact, there are some times when you really need to change your mind. There are times it is necessary for us to be willing to change our thought process or position. Here are three times when we should be

Sometimes You Are Wrong

Believe it or not, there are times when you are wrong. We all want to believe we are always right, but that is not always the case. There are times we are wrong and we have to be willing to admit we are wrong and move on. Admitting you are wrong and then changing your position are two of the hardest things people attempt to do. It takes a toll on your pride. There is nothing worse than to see someone who is clearly wrong dig into their position even deeper, defending something that is indefensible. People already know you are wrong even if you won’t admit it. Admitting it and changing your mind relieves a lot of tension in your life.

Sometimes Things Change

Sometimes you were right but circumstances changed and now you are on the wrong side of the discussion. Things are constantly changing all around us. Many of us lived through what has been called the Great Recession. Some of the positions and decisions made prior to 2007 would not be the right or wise choices post 2007. Things changed. Things will continue to change in the world and in our lives. When circumstances change, we often need to re-evaluate our previous choices and decisions; we may need a new approach.

Sometimes It Doesn’t Matter

Some things just don’t matter enough to hold out for your own will or get your way. Some things are so trivial that we would be better off to just go with the flow instead of digging in on our own viewpoint. You may have wanted to eat at a particular restaurant or go to a particular movie, but sometimes for the cohesiveness of a relationship or group, you are better served to just change your mind and go along with everyone else. Some things just don’t matter and it’s OK to change your mind for the benefit of others. Everything is not life or death. If you have control issues, you probably have never changed your mind anyway.

What do you need to change your mind about right now? Maybe you should take a few minutes to examine some places where changing your mind would make your life easier and even better. It’s OK to change your mind. Sometimes you need to.

Preparing your family for Christmas

Thanksgiving is behind us now and the Christmas season is upon us. If your house is like mine, the Christmas decorations have already been up for a few days. Things seem to speed up this time of year. We find ourselves looking behind us at a holiday that has passed instead of looking forward to the excitement of a holiday to come.

We spend a lot of time reacting to everything going on around us at Christmas instead of taking time to prepare for a better, more memorable holiday. There are a lot of things that influence what the season will look like. Some of those things we have no control over such as extended family schedules and plans. However, many of those things you do have some control over. With some conversations on the front side, the more memorable and enjoyable your Christmas season will be.

Quality Time

This sounds so cliche. Everyone wants quality time. But when there is a family gathering, making the most of the time together is even more important. As families grow and children and grandchildren move away, there is so much we want to condense in a small amount of time. Letting everyone know that you want to make sure the time together is well spent is important. You can even make some plans to improve the time spent together. You may decide to have an electronic-free time or possibly create some type of game for everyone to play. Being intentional with the time you have together will improve the experience and create stronger memories than racing through the day.

Reasonable Expectations

Christmas often turns into a time of disappointment because we allow our expectations to get out of line. Sometimes we expect family to spend more time with us than they do with extended family or in-laws. These expectations are even more compounded for blended families. Having reasonable expectations makes Christmas a much more pleasant experience. One of the other places where expectations should be metered is with gifts. There can be tensions both with spending too much or not wanting to be generous. Many families overextend themselves at Christmas and even get into debt to buy gifts. This is unnecessary and can cause the season to be way more stressful than it should. Bigger gifts rarely make Christmas memorable. Stress may create unpleasant memories. Why not make sure everyone has reasonable expectations for time and money.

True Reason

Christmas is about Christ and love. One of the most important things we can do is spend some time reflecting on the true reason for the season. This may include telling one another something they did that made them feel loved, reading the Christmas story or just taking turns telling what Christmas means to each person. It is so easy to rush through this season and not take the time as a family to emphasize why we celebrate.

Christmas can be a fun time of year. It can be even better if we take the time to be intentional about just a few things. Have some conversations before Christmas, and when it gets here, it will be even better.

Thanksgiving challenges

Thanksgiving is approaching and many people will be participating in traditions that their family has observed for years. Thanksgiving was initiated to remind us to reflect and offer thanks for the many good things we have been given in our life.

Though every family has different traditions, here are some challenges that also come along with the holiday. Some of them we have control over while others we just have to manage. Some people look forward to that day or weekend while others face it with dread. Some people manage the challenges of the day while it is overwhelming for others. Here are a few of the challenges most of us deal with every time this season rolls around.

Food

Turkey coma. That is all that needs to be said. Many of our traditions include some of our favorite foods that we may not get to eat on a regular basis. We eat…and eat…and eat some more. Eating is necessary. Managing what we eat and how much we eat is where the challenge lies. That one day can throw us off our routine so much that we spend several weeks trying to get back on track. Food is a central part of Thanksgiving, but make sure it doesn’t take over. We can all learn how to enjoy it without overindulging.

Family

For most people, getting together with family is something that they look forward to. For others there are challenges with family that create anxiety when time together approaches. Even in the best families, having everyone together for an extended period of time can create tensions that have to be managed. Family should be something we enjoy but it is critical to understand that everyone has different personalities in the room and there are probably new people in the room, such as spouses and children, who also have influence on relationships. If we are aware of the challenges of these dynamics, it will help us better navigate any difficulties that may arise.

Time

Time flies. We have all said it and experienced it. We never seem to have the time we want when it comes to the holidays. The bigger the family gets the more those time challenges impose themselves. When we marry there is a new family that needs our time. When we have children, they often have schedules that need to be worked around. Often we spend what time we have rushing from home to home or town to town to try to accommodate as many people as we can. The danger is that no one gets quality; only a quick hello in passing. Being aware of the time challenges that holidays can bring can help us plan better so that our time is used well.

We probably can’t erase the challenges of a holiday, but being aware of them will help us navigate the holidays better and make them more memorable and less stressful. Enjoy your Thanksgiving by being aware and intentional.

What it means to steward

What does it mean to be a steward?  Often we think of stewards or stewardship as it relates to money, but the word steward applies to many different things. As a matter of fact, it may apply to almost anything. Steward, in its most basic form, means to manage or tend to something. For example, on a cruise ship, the people who care for your cabin are called cabin stewards. Your room has been placed in their care and it is their responsibility to look after it.

 

We appreciate when others steward things for us, but we probably don’t think as much about what we should be stewarding ourselves. Each of us is a steward of the things we have been fortunate enough to have in our lives. It is not just money or possessions. We have been given so much more. I think all of us could spend a little time evaluating our stewardship. I think there are four good questions that will help us evaluate where we are and how we could improve.

What have I had?

No matter who you are, all of us have had things. One of the first questions we should ask ourselves is what have we been given or what have we had. What did my family environment look like growing up or in years past? What did you gain from that family unit? What education was I given and what have I learned? What jobs have I held and how did they benefit or hurt me? What have my past relationships looked like? What of those have been beneficial and which ones were harmful? What talents and gifts were given to me? What things have people invested into my life? What opportunities have I had in my past? All of us have had many things in our live over the years. We rarely take time to inventory them, but knowing what we have had may give us some insight into why we are where we are and teach us some things going forward.

What have I done with what I have had?

Once you have that list, think about what you did with what you had. Did those relationships flourish? Did you excel in school or just get by? Did you work diligently at the jobs you were given or did you just show up? What do I have to show for what I have been given? Are there some things I could have done differently? Have I learned any lessons with the things I have been given? What we have done with what we have been given is an indicator of what we might do in the future. If we are not aware of poor choices behind us, it will be difficult for us to make good choices ahead of us. This exercise can be painful, but it will also be beneficial.

What do I have?

It is not enough to evaluate what is behind you. We appreciate when others steward things for us, but we probably don’t think as much about what we should be stewarding ourselves. The next stewardship question you want to ask is “what do I have?”. This will include assets or money, but it is certainly not limited to that. Maybe you have an opportunity in front of you. What does your family unit look like today? For example, my family unit looks completely different than it did 20 years ago. I have a blended family (lessons should have been learned) with three grandchildren. These are all things I need to steward. I have a career and influence that I need to steward. I have relationships that need my attention. As I take an inventory of what I have, I can clearly understand there is great responsibility. This is a great place to spend a little time be thankful as well.

This is where stewardship gets put into action. Maybe you have previously struggled in an area. What are you going to do moving forward? If your stewardship needs to improve, there are some other questions you can ask yourself. Who can assist me? There are people who have expertise in an area you are struggling with and they can help guide you in stewarding what you have going forward. This can be anyone from a financial advisor to a marriage counselor. What do I need to know? All of us need to be learning and growing, but you may need to know something specific. There may be a book or an online class that would solve the very thing you need to know right now to help you manage what you have been given. Being a good steward means knowing what we are going to do with what we have.

Some of us are better stewards in one area of life than another. We can all improve somewhere and asking these questions of ourselves will greatly improve our stewardship. Don’t get discouraged. Be determined to improve and change. Everything around us will improve as we improve our ability to steward.

When You Preach To Yourself

Recently, Barbara and I were taking a trip and the conversation turned to my sermon from the day before. She asked me, was I preaching to myself. That is a heavy question that someone may have been pondering, but not necessarily prepared to discuss. My reply to her was “probably so”. It was true. I was kicking myself not just stepping on toes. Just because you know the truth or even speak the truth does not mean it always translates to living the truth. The good thing about truth is that it is not dependent on you living it in order for it to be valid.

It is likely that the widest gap in the world is between knowing and doing. When we find ourselves in the midst of the tension of knowing what to do but living in a manner that does not reflect that, it would be beneficial to evaluate our situation and determine to make some adjustments. That is much more simple to say than it is to live out because all of us have natural inclinations that make some things more difficult for us than it might for others. Here are a few things I have been processing as it relates to preaching to myself.

Acknowledgement Is The First Step In The Right Direction

I am not a good celebrator. By the time I have finished one thing I have already been planning and processing the next thing or if you asked my wife, the next ten things. I can recognize progress, but often fail to take the time to celebrate that something good has happened. Celebration helps build momentum and when we are trying to make significant changes in our life, we can certainly use all of the momentum we can muster. Just recognizing that you are struggling in an area is reason for celebration. Without that acknowledgment there will be no other progress, so this is the first step in the right direction.

It Is Painful

I have yet to meet the person who enjoyed acknowledging their faults or flaws. Sometimes the pain comes from realizing the source of your hurts. Other times the pain comes because you have faced the same problem over and over and just never addressed it. Even making changes in our life to address the issue can be painful. It may include lifestyle or even relationship changes. The more drastic the change the more painful it can be. Just be aware that it is a pain that will heal and you will be better for it.

Take Action

This is critical. Just acknowledging a problem is not sufficient to fix the problem. You must take action. Some thought needs to go into what action you will take. Just haphazardly taking action can be detrimental to you. Taking the right action at the right time is what is most important. Sitting still, at least for any extended period of time, does not improve the situation. The way to fix the problem is to close the gap between knowing and doing by taking action.

Be Open About It With Someone Who Can and Will Help

Very few problems can be solved without the assistance of other people. There are people who have strengths in the area where you are weakest or have conquered the same problem in spite of a weakness. Those people are often willing to help you overcome any challenges you may have. People generally want to see other people succeed. Seek out those people who can help you and you will find it much easier to arrive at the place you want to be.

All of us have areas that are difficult for us to manage. This is not an excuse to ignore them. Once they are identified, understand that is the beginning and not the end. Awareness of what is ahead will help you navigate to the place you want to be.

We Have Problems

“I have problems. You have problems. We all have problems.” I recall hearing Zig Ziglar using this line often in his teaching to point out the fact that no one is exempt from problems nor should we allow it to be an excuse not to live life to its fullest. Problems are just a part of life. Some people are experts are pointing out problems. Others are experts at finding problems. While others move through life dealing with the things that come their way as just a matter of course.

Though we all seem to have individual problems, our society, and specifically our country, has some very troubling problems that we need to wake up and deal with. I woke up today to reports of the largest mass shooting in the history of our country in Las Vegas. As I write over 50 have been killed and over 500 injured. These mass shootings always seem to start specific debates and we hurry to the argument that makes us the most comfortable and defends the positions we support.

The truth lies somewhere among a combination of several different areas, not solely in a single position. There is no single solution, simple solution or immediate solution. Most of these problems need constant attention and adjustments. They never completely go away because evil is always present. This, however, is not an excuse for us to ignore them or leave them unaddressed. Prayer is important but the response to prayer is action. Let’s take a look at some of the problems facing our society today.

Hate Problem

Hate seems to be bubbling in every corner of the world. There has to be some measure of hate for us to witness all of the violence that is so prevalent everywhere we look. The internet has made the world smaller and has given a voice to people who once had limited access to others that may hold the same point of view. People also use these tools to influence or recruit others to their way of thinking. If people think, look or act differently than we do, our outlook often evolves into strong language of extreme dislike and can eventually, and often does, lead to hate. Hate breeds unrelenting anger toward a particular person or group of people. Anger is one of the most dangerous emotions we have. This bubbling anger only serves as fuel for so many of the other problems we have as a society.

Mental Illness Problem

It is clear that mental illness is on the rise and that our society is not keeping up in the care and/or prevention of these mental illnesses. Part of our problem is that we prefer to pretend these illnesses are not real or that they are just things that people need to “just get over”. These mental illnesses are affecting how we interact with one another and how we respond to the normal problems that life throws at us. When ignored, our responses and interactions can not only be wrong, but they can be dangerous. Before you object that there is over-diagnosis and overmedication, I will concede you are right. However, it should not be an excuse to ignore what is real and rising. If each of us would educate ourselves about some of these pressing illnesses, we could be part of the solution for those around us.

Gun Problem

I am not a gun owner but I have plenty of friends who are responsible gun owners. I believe they have the right to own those guns and have no interest in taking them from them. However, we have a problem with guns in the US that other countries are not experiencing. I am a firm believer that there are some guns that should not be legal to own. They are not for self defense. They are offensive only. I know that criminals will get guns, but that is true worldwide and yet other countries are not experiencing mass shootings like we are in the US. Criminals amassing weapons is not a sound or logical argument for why we should have them. Should we have the right? Certainly. For some. There is also the argument of “recreation”. There are lots of things done for “recreation” that are not in the best interest of the people doing them or society. “Recreational sex” or “recreational drugs” are two things done for “recreation” that are clearly not beneficial for society and so recreation or sport should be a very limited reasoning. I am not sure what the full answer is, but completely shutting down a discussion about how guns are distributed in this country doesn’t solve any problems.

Conversation Problem

The gun problem leads to one of our biggest problems and that is a conversation problem. People who disagree can no longer have dialogue. We see things our way only. We only listen to things that support our point of view. We can find a news channel that supports our point of view and we always walk away believing our facts are correct and our opinion is absolute. We identify with classes or groups instead of identifying with people. Almost all problems can be solved in the context of relationship, but it is nearly impossible to have relationship without dialogue. Marriage is the clearest example. You may not agree, but you must seek to understand. Understanding creates commonality and community and is desperately needed in our country.

Some normal everyday problems we just need to work through. Some problems, like the ones above, are things that need to be addressed by all of us – together. There may not be an absolute solution, but there can be progress as we seek ways to make each of these areas better. I have problems. You have problems We all have problems. Some of them we need to work together to resolve.

What To Do when There is a Fire In Your House

There are a lot of different reasons why there may be a fire in your house; some good or on purpose and others simply dangerous. Your view and response to each of these is important. Marriage can often have some of the same qualities of fire. Some we are excited about while others we are not. How you view certain situations in your marriage will determine the success of your marriage.

Often in my profession people will come to me in a panic because they feel their marriage is on the brink of destruction when in reality they are just overreacting to a situation that could be managed if it were approached properly. It is much like fire in your home. If you call the fire department because a candle was burning, that is completely unnecessary. Social media only gives us another outlet to magnify our problems. People talk about their marriage much like they do a fire in their house. Often it was an ember in the fireplace but to hear them talk their house (or marriage) was burning to the ground.

Fire is necessary in marriage. However, it must be maintained and cannot be ignored. It must be tended to, stoked and controlled. It is not really any different than fire in our home. Let’s look at the correlation between fire and marriage.

Mood

Candles set a mood. It can be the glow of the candle that sets the mood, but more often it is the scent of the candle that we are after. That small flame ignites smells that can refresh a room and make it extremely inviting. Occasionally when left unattended, the candle may burn too long and make a waxy mess. This may frustrate us temporarily but it is not the end of the world.

Fire creates mood in our marriage. That light flicker that constantly is lit inside of us for our mate sets the mood daily in our relationship. It makes it inviting to be in the presence of our partner. Sometimes the mood gets a little off kilter, much like melted wax and things are not exactly as we planned. The mood of your relationship needs a little attention. This is not the end of the marriage, or even need for counseling (and never social media complaining). It’s just time to pay a little closer attention to things until we have them back in order.

Comfort

On a cold day, one of the most comforting things in a home is a nice warm fire in the fireplace. The crackling of the wood. The smell that fills the house. The warmth it brings to our bodies. A fire in a fireplace can touch so many of our senses and bring such a comfort to a home. One of the largest “comfort food” restaurants in the US is Cracker Barrell. In every one of the restaurants you will find a fireplace because it adds to that feeling of comfort. Fires in a fireplace are started intentionally and kept in a controlled environment, which adds to the level of comfort.

Fire in marriage can bring comfort.  Sex and fire are often equated and there is some correlation to be made. But one of the greatest benefits of sex is comfort. It is that assurance of two people committed to one another being able to share something exclusively. In the Bible we find that Isaac was comforted with sex by Rebeccah when his mother died. Those moments of passion in one another’s arms brings comfort in knowing that I am completely yours and you are completely mine. It is initiated by us in an environment where we feel safe. Comfort in marriage is necessary.

Survival

There are several places in a home where fire helps us survive. We may have a gas furnace or a gas stove. Even electricity is equated to fire and creates sparks. We need fire in our home to survive. We need heat when it is cold and air conditioning when it is hot. We need to keep some food cold while we also need it to heat or cook that same food in order to safely eat it. We need lights to navigate and warm water to bath. Certain amounts of fire are necessary for us to survive.

The same is true in marriage. Fire is necessary for our survival. The spark that gives us hope. The fire that fuels us to stay committed. The light that helps us see clearly the needs of our spouse and helps navigate difficult times. The fire that drives us to provide for those around us. Marriage cannot exist without some spark, some fire, to move keep it going.

Accident

The danger with any fire is that there can be accidents. The smallest candle ignored can burn an entire house down. We are told from an early age not to play with fire. We need fire but are just being warned not to be careless with fire because accidents can potentially lead to devastation. Over my lifetime I have had plenty of accidents with fire. I have made a mess on a table because a candle was left unattended. I was singed one time because I wasn’t paying attention to the draft on a grill. I had a campfire get out of hand. Just last night I melted a lid in the microwave. I have burnt my fingers with a match. The list of small accidents that have happened with fire is long. In almost every case I was able to deal with the problem myself. On one occasion someone helped me put out the campfire. In most cases there has been some minimal damage. The lid melted and my wife was frustrated. The table was sooted. I didn’t have eyebrows for a couple of weeks. There was no major loss, I didn’t have have to call the fire department and there was no major crisis.

Accidents happen in marriage. The fire of marriage can create mood, comfort and the ability to survive but it can also create problems when there is an accident. Left unattended marriage can get out of balance and attitudes can get out of whack leading to conflict. Conflict can cause tempers to flare which may make matters even worse. The fire of passion left uncontrolled may seek other partners which can wreak havoc on any family unit. What was meant for comfort suddenly creates great discomfort. The light that helps us navigate our spouse’s needs can turn into a conversation where we are only seeing their faults. What once was a benefit to our home has suddenly turned into a problem and it is up to us to deal with it.

The danger is that when these accidents happen we are tempted to exaggerate the issues at hand. No one would call the fire department because wax had gotten on a table. They would just clean it up. The same is true with a campfire that got a little out of hand or a stove whose flame was too high. We would address it and deal with it. We wouldn’t abandon the house because some food caught on fire on the stove. We would not even abandon the house for a kitchen fire. It may require some people to help us put it out and other people to help us repair it, but we still wouldn’t just walk away. Why is it that we are ready to throw up our hands at every flame that gets out of hand in marriage?

Social media has created an avenue where we can garner attention sensational comments. Thus, we are tempted to share every flare-up in our marriage with the world. However, we don’t tell them that it was just a candle that fell over. We describe it as a house fire. Everyone doesn’t need to know these things. Just as with the majority of accidents with fire you have in your home, you can deal with flare-ups in marriage without anyone ever knowing it. On occasion you may need some assistance, but even then it is going to be for specific help, not an all-call. Why do we throw our hands up and consider walking away every time there is a small incident? Even on the occasions when there is major damage, walking away is the last resort. It may require some outside assistance for us to get things back in order, but it can be fixed. Your home and your marriage are much more valuable than that.

Don’t allow the mishaps of marriage to derail you any more than small accidents around the home would cause you to walk away from it. Accidents happen. Deal with them promptly and wisely. Sometimes the effects will be small. Clean it up and move on. Other times there will be major damage. Get the help needed to repair it and enjoy the new. We need fire in our home and in our marriage. Just know its purpose and be prepared to deal with the accidents.

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About Me

I currently serve as Lead Pastor at Open Door Church and I am a certified trainer & coach with the John Maxwell Team. I am also an Associate Trainer with EQUIP training leaders around the world. I currently own two businesses related to the foodservice equipment industry. I am a certified speaker, teacher and coach with the John Maxwell Team. I can offer you workshops, seminars, keynote speaking, and coaching, aiding your personal and professional growth through study and practical application of John’s proven leadership methods. Working together, I will move you and/or your team or organization in the desired direction to reach your goals.