I currently serve on our church board, where our pastor has us reading “Emotionally Healthy Discipleship”, in order to help us develop as a team as we lead our church. I’m thankful we have a pastor that is intentional about growing the church’s staff and leadership.
One item that really stood out as I was reading this week was a section about how our experiences impact our mindset and how that influences how we make decisions. Nothing new there, right? We all know our experiences influence our decisions, but for some reason, this reality landed on me with an eye-opening air of newness this time.
As I was reading a case study of a church board making a decision, and how each member was making their decisions based on their past experience, I immediately thought of this scenario in the context of our own church board.
We, as a board, have been through the decision-making process many times. However, now I have a new perspective on how others’ decisions might be influenced by a completely different set of experiences than I have had, and vice versa. Every person on our board (or any team for that matter) will filter their decisions through their own experience, just like me.
This reminds me that when someone comes to a different conclusion or decision than me, it’s not because they’re necessarily opposed to my view, but rather they are deciding based on their experience. It also reminds me to ask questions to help understand why they came to that decision.
I’m thankful for the broader perspective this simple reminder offers.
Here’s a quick reminder that we tend to find more of what we’re looking for.
If we feel like the world is going crazy, we’ll notice things that reinforce that thought. If we think all <insert people group> are jerks, we’ll notice evidence that supports that too. We’ll find all the negativity we want, when we have our radar up for it.
Likewise, we’ll also notice the good in the world when our radar is looking for it. When we’re looking for acts of kindness, generosity, and inspiring human behavior, we’ll find it.
So what are you looking for?
It’s been a wild couple of weeks on the geo-political scene. There have been so many horrific and heart-breaking images coming out of Ukraine and so much coverage of the events that it can feel overwhelming. And while it’s good to be informed of what’s going on in the world, I don’t think it’s good for us to be over-saturated with information. There needs to be some boundaries on how much information we’re consuming on a devastating topic.
It’s natural to want to know the latest with regard to a major world event, but I think it’s also important to make sure we’re allowing some positive content into our minds as well. I like specifically like the encouragement we get from Philippians 4:8 where we’re told to think about things that are:
This is such a good and timely reminder to make sure that, in addition to news, we’re also filling our mind with content that will encourage and lift us up. If all we’re consuming is the daily news, we’re going to be left feeling anxious, afraid, depressed, and exhausted, and who wants to go around feeling like that all day?
Be mindful in the days ahead (every day, actually) to fill your mind with encouraging and uplifting content that evokes inspiration, gratitude, and joy. It’s out there, we just have to make sure we’re noticing.