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Christian Living

What Posture Do You Take?

The posture a writer takes impacts the perspective of the reader. Unfortunately, without proper perspective on the writer, the authors impact can outweigh reality.

Posture impacts perspective
My posture sure impacts your perspective, doesn’t it? How big is this fish?

Beginning Again After Reflection

Having just taken a 2-week break from my daily blogging routine, I’m coming back at the task fresh from some time of reflection.

Ultimately, my reasons for writing this blog haven’t changed from when I started it in 2004. Back then I said I was starting this blog, “Mostly as a way to share with myself, just what is going on.”

Historically, my blog is at it’s best when I’m writing about my journey. And, speaking just for myself, I feel worst about it when I try to use it for some other purpose.

Perspective is Underrated
Sure, I can make that fish look huge because I’m holding the camera. But adding some perspective sometimes reveals that when the author controls the perspective, he controls your perception, too.

The Blog I Want to Read

The other day my mind racing with a mix of daily details and dreams for the year to come. My mind latched onto a thread and ran with it. I started to wonder about a blog that I’d wake up to read every day. I asked myself, “What would be a blog I’d actually pay to subscribe to?

The answer was clear: For me, I’d like to read a blog from leaders about what’s really going on. All the highs and lows of leading people/organizations/movements. Sure, I’d like to hear stories of triumph. But I’d really like to read stories of the messy reality. Self-doubts. Social wrangling. Stupidities gravitational pull. Family complications. Staff issues. Obstacles. Crap.

Mark Cuban
Mark Cuban, a self-made billionaire in his 20s, has enough money to blog without a filter. Unfortunately, most bloggers are about a billion dollars short of being able to write like that.

If leaders wrote about that stuff– I’d pay for that. When I think about it, that’s why I love Mark Cuban’s blog. He’s got enough money to not feel the need to constantly put his best foot forward. He can put his raw thoughts forward because he doesn’t have to care what others think about him. And the result? Butter-mixed-with-honey-on-white-bread-toast. 

When a leader constantly puts on a front, placing his best foot forward with some wise axioms, I learn something.

When a leader bravely shares the mess, placing his worst foot forward*, through fear and overcoming the desire to put a bow on it, I learn a ton.

Affirming My Posture

Gomer Pyle
Some bloggers are Gomers. They write a bumbling story of failing around to the bemusement of the reader.

I’ve written long enough to know the value of posture. Some take the posture of authority, positioning themselves as the experts. Others posture themselves as Gomer Pyle, bumbling along from one calamity to the next while readers giggle at their gaffe’s. Some writers are pretty, the way they craft their words is far more powerful than the words they craft.

I’ve flirted, and will continue to flirt, with all of those postures. I’ve never been good at following rules– especially my own.

But I want to affirm an intentional posture I intend to take going forward. I’m going to write more from a posture of weakness than a posture of strength.

Yes– and of course– I’m going to celebrate triumph. In fact, last year was an amazingly triumphant year. And we have plans for 2013  to be even more so.

But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.

2 Corinthians 12:9-10

 

*This concept of “the worst foot forward” comes from Scott Rubin’s Soapbox Rant at last years Middle School Ministry Campference. Solid gold, Scott. 

By Adam McLane

Kristen and Adam live in the San Diego neighborhood of Rolando with their three children.

3 replies on “What Posture Do You Take?”

Dude, thanks for the reminder. Reminds me a little of Dan Allender’s perspective in leading with a limp.

I naturally lean towards being transparent but some times I become timid, afraid that people will find out I don’t really know what I’m doing most the time.

This reminds me to continue to lead, live and write in a way that allows people to experience the good, bad and ugly with me.

Love the new years resolution.

I guess I’m a different kind of Christian. I’m technically from a psychology stand point an at risk kid with the things I’ve lived through, parading about in a church kid, 2 parent, middle class lifestyle. It’s hard in an evangelical world to put my worst foot forward, because I’ve lived through and experienced things that aren’t the typical norm for most “church kids”. I find I have more in common with urban workers and social workers than I do with most youth pastors, and now that I’m doing ministry as a youth pastor, I have to wonder what parents, students, etc are thinking as I try to be real, and vulnerable, but mostly just end up getting the vulnerable and the after effects of it. Not sure alot of people can relate to some of it (though there definitely are a lot of people that can…most of them are just not in the church 🙁

This is the long way of saying I can relate and have alot of admiration for your desire to be this. I have difficulty finding the balance between those two postures though given my background

Can I tell you a secret?

You’re exactly the youth worker you need to be.

It takes all kinds, people of all kinds of backgrounds, to make an impact. I never went to church (seriously, that is) until my senior year of high school. I STILL don’t fit in within the church culture, and I think my ministry is better for it.

Relax. Be you. And rest knowing that in Jesus you’re a new creation, creating to do good works. (Eph 2:10)

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