This concept is in regard to the conversations we have in the communities and organizations we live in.
I am sad to discover just how different I am from those closest to me in perspective, worldview, and values.
While we realize physical absence certainly has an affect, I am thinking today of the realities of emotional absence. As a pastor and leader, you are expected to be on-call and at the ready at all times. You are to be fully available for everyone at all times, and we too often justify this as "the life of ministry".
Pastors, ministry leaders, those days you are absent (both physically and emotionally) are gone forever. [TWEET THAT]
Look at the ministry you have and realize that everything you do can be done or shared by someone else. Only you can be husband to your wife (or wife to your husband). Only you can be mom or dad to your kids.
I am trying to challenge myself to lose less and less days forever.
I married my dream girl I have a daughter I am smitten by I have a family who are vocally proud of who I am I have in-laws I am proud to call family I have 1.5 college degrees from expensive private universities I work with college students every day I have incredible students I have spoken and/or performed all over the country I have a day job that is VERY close to my 'dream job' I have some of the best friends I could ever wish for I lost 70+ pounds a few years ago and have not returned to "that weight" I live within 2hrs of the ocean, the desert, Tahoe, the mountains, SanFran and Fresno I had a hotdog and a coffee with Brennan Manning I have stood front row center at a Counting Crows concert I have seen 6 Counting Crows concerts I have learned life-lessons from homeless men I have jumped from a 100ft pole into nothing I still read and write with these things called pen and paper I have seen Michael Jordan play basketball twice I flush my toilet with cleaner water than most of the world ever sees My friends' dogs dress and eat better than most of the world's people My baristas know me by name (and I know theirs) I have sat in on a Second City comedy school class I was once Retweeted by Adam Duritz I get free books in exchange for writing about them. (win win) I drive a Scion xB I am a devout Mac user named PC I have tested and solidified a faith over time I have been ambushed by the love of Jesus in a way I'll never recover from.
No matter how stuck you feel or trapped you feel, you always have reason for a list like this.