I want to get better. If you want to get better, you’ve come to the right place. I have no idea how you want to get better. If you know, then write your own blog or book—or contribute here. But as far as I’m concerned, these are the topics we’re going to hit on as we begin:
- How do I improve every day?
- How do I find happiness and success in my current job?
- How do I get in the best shape of my life (at 48)?
- How do I find fulfillment and share that with others?
- How do I go from working for somebody else to working for myself once again—or can I successfully do both?
- How do I build a business that can make a difference?
- How can I daily follow Jesus?
I’m currently the marketing and creative director for a small business—a utility supply house. It’s been a good run. Eighteen months after I started, we’ve doubled the size of the business. Profits are up, costs are down, and a second facility has been opened in another state this month. Things are looking up.
That’s the here and now. In the past, I’ve started five other businesses. Only two of those are still in existence and they’re both on life support. I know what it’s like to fail in a big way. Nothing teaches lessons like an eight-figure mistake.
My wife and I haven’t stepped in a church in sixteen months. My wife was on staff at a local mega church for three and a half years and we saw first hand what churches have become: machines. It’s all about the programming. It really turned us off and was the last straw that sent us into our “church sabbatical” days.
We’ve had other issues with the church and the world of faith-based business that has contributed to these feelings: Two sons that were in ministry that were chewed up and spat out. From my personal experience, I worked with faith-based businesses for nine years as a designer, marketer and consultant, including one of the major conferences in existence today that left me wondering when all was said and done, “How did it come to this?” To top all that off, one of those faith-based businesses went belly up, leaving one of my companies on the hook for $40K. We’ve spent the better part of the last five years digging out of that financial hole.
Sixteen months without church. What have we learned? Just how incredibly evil people are, including ourselves. Let me repeat that: we learned how incredibly evil we are.
Those aren’t my words. Jesus clearly points out our current condition in this passage from Matthew: “Which of you, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake? If you, then, though you are EVIL, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him? So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.” (Matthew 6:9-12, NIV, emphasis on EVIL my own)
I truly believe that all those years of going to church and trying to do “the Lord’s work” whether it was working with a church (and I’ve worked for a lot of ’em), working with a faith-based business, or doing our own ministry, we developed this really nasty crust over our eyes and couldn’t see our true condition. The church added to that blindness by espousing an “all you gotta do is” mentality. Christianity is not an “all you gotta do is” commitment. Christianity is an “either you’re all in or nothing” type of commitment. That’s another thing we’ve learned over the last 16 months.
Thankfully, God has come and has began to speak truth into our lives:
- To follow ME, you’ve got to follow Jesus. To follow Jesus may very well cost you everything.
- Yes, you’re evil. Now I expect you to get better.
And that’s the gist of what we’ll be covering here: Daily Incremental Growth—in God and in life. I hope you enjoy the journey as much as we do.