Friday, January 8, 2016

Write your own Headline this year...

I heard a recent sermon that challenged me to look at the perspective of what I am leading with.  How are you doing?... sometimes we respond with "I'm tired,"  "Fine," "OK....."  Do I really want to lead with that?  Is that really the "story" of my life?

Starting 2016 in Genesis again, Joseph's story jumped out at me... He had some back to back bad days.... his jealous brothers plotted to kill him, sold him into slavery, falsely accused of rape, wrongly imprisoned, promised favor and forgotten.  In all that, Joseph's head line was... "God sent me here to save lives!"    Wow, now that's a headline!  Joseph meets his brothers after all these terrible things.... (Genesis 45:4-5  "you sold me"  "God Sent me here to save lives"... "God meant this for good" ...these headlines are true, but totally different perspectives.

In journalism, the headline does not often fairly represent the story.  Did you know that the writer does not usually write the head line? The editor does.  He goes for the sensational words that will get the reader to buy the paper, read the story, click the link, etc.  But the reality is, often, we don't read the story, we only read the headline and assume the story is represented in its entirety by the headline.  Therefore, we do not really know the true story.  I wonder, is that what people often see our life to be... by what we lead with... our headline?

We are often not the author of our story.  Things happen to us sometimes that are not in our control.  We do however, choose who sits at the editors desk... Satan would love to take that job and represent our story with his plan, or hide the real story of what God is doing in my life for the world to see.  He wants to use our limitations to shut us down in all areas.  He wants to put big bold letters on our life that will mislead us from our created purpose.  As a pastor, I often hear people's full stories, but the editor of their story is not honoring God.  ....I don't have friends, "Nobody will ever love me," I don't do well in school, "I am no good," my parents are divorced, "I will never be a good dad," my kids struggle, "I am a bad parent."  These circumstances of life may certainly be true and are often out of our control... but the headline is yours to broadcast.

Don't write your headline out of your pain and discouragement but out of your purpose....  not out of regret but out of the lessons learned....  not out of the exhaustion of life challenges but out of the fullness of opportunities God gives....  not out of the past struggles but out of the vision, God's assignment for your life.  The headline of your dreams is not your present status, but the difference you are going to make.  In all things God works for the good of those who love Him and who are called according to His purpose.  Do we believe this?

 What if we showed up each day like we have been sent... deployed for action.    "Go to all the world, make disciples, baptizing them in the name of the Father....  and I will be with you always!"  What is your headline...  What about... "I have an important assignment,"  "building friendship bridges," "I am discipling my children," " I am discovering my long range assignment through my present trials,"  "I had a full slate of opportunities today," "I'm thriving," "I'm in love," "I win," "I'm grateful," "I have been sent here," this year, mine is going to be "I'm on a Victorious journey!"

Send me your 2016 headline....  I want to know your true story!