What Do You See?

Friday, November 10, 2023

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Dear Pastors

What Do You See?


One of my more favourite questions when interacting with pastors and leaders is, “Are you soaring like an eagle or pecking with the chickens?” In other words, are you bogged down with the minutiae of everyday ministry and all the challenges it brings so much so that you have no time or even inclination to get above it all?

Every year in November and December I consciously spend a considerable amount of time envisioning the future with a particular focus on the (calendar) year ahead. I like to think of this exercise as soaring with the eagles. It’s a mental image that helps me to take a long and hard look at what is happening around me and assess the ‘state of affairs’.

When you soar like an eagle (mentally and spiritually speaking) there are a couple of really important things you experience that you will never experience while pecking with the chooks.

1. The big picture. Fun Fact. Did you know an eagle has 1 million cones per mm² on its retina. The light-detecting cells of an eagle have more cones at the back of the eyeball than most any other creature. A human eye has 200,000 cones per mm², compared to an eagle’s eye with one million cones per mm². Imagine then what God sees?

Pastor. When it comes to next year what do you see? Have you taken the time to talk to God about where you need to go and what you should be doing? And perhaps more importantly what you should stop doing? Have you taken the time to draw or write down what the Holy Spirit is saying to you and your church?

2. The noise stops. Fun Fact. The eagle can fly higher than any other bird as high as 15,000 feet and they typically fly in long glides to conserve energy.

When you soar high above your current situation and circumstances the constant pecking, clucking, complaining, fussing, flapping and jostling STOPS. Your phone is off, actually it should be left behind and it’s just you, your bible and a notebook and it’s quiet……..very very quiet. Now you are alone and in a posture to hear that ‘still small voice’ we all so desperately need to hear.

Pastor. I can’t tell you strongly enough how important this is. Right now you and your church maybe stuck (and may have been stuck a long time), you may be facing a seemingly intractable problem that is unbelievably stubborn to the point of sapping you of life and vitality and/or you are facing the challenging situation of long term conflict with another leader or leaders in your inner circle that is leaving you feel stressed and discouraged. You need to take some time out and go soaring with the eagles. Height gives perspective. Height gives distance. Height gives clarity.

And finally from Isaiah 40:28-31(NKJV)

Have you not known? Have you not heard?
The everlasting God, the Lord,
The Creator of the ends of the earth, neither faints nor is weary.
His understanding is unsearchable. He gives power to the weak,
And to those who have no might He increases strength.
Even the youths shall faint and be weary, and the young men shall utterly fall,
But those who wait on the Lord shall renew their strength;
They shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary,
They shall walk and not faint.


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