Archive for the ‘friendship’ Category

Over the last two weeks I’ve been thinking and praying through an upcoming series on Manhood that we’ll be doing in June. I’ve been wrestling with the simple question why is it that many men have a hard time asking for help. Now, I’m not talking about the stereotypical “can’t ask for directions” or “I can put this thing together without the directions” type issues. I’m talking about what is at the core of a man not wanting to ask for help with his life? Many of these points are found in women as well, but for today I’m focusing on men. Here are some points I’m seeing why we as men can’t say these words:

1. We don’t want to look weak: “If I share this issue in my life, I’ll look weak and people will put me in the “broken” or “freak show” category. There is a mentality that says because I’m an adult….I’m supposed to know what to do here. They have what I call the “I got this” disease. “I got this. I just need more time and more will power and I’ll pull this together.” Here the man refuses to acknowledge that if they could have fixed it by now they would have. They have a hard time saying, I have no idea what I’m doing.

2. We don’t know we need help: This would seem like a no brainer, but it’s worth saying. How many times have you encountered someone that’s had a huge “blind spot” in their life? They didn’t see the wake they were leaving behind in their life so they “didn’t know what they didn’t know.”

3. We Don’t Want Accountability: This one is straight forward. They don’t ask because they don’t want accountability. If you let someone in on the issues you’re walking through, all of the sudden you’ve let someone “in” and they’re going to ask how you’re doing in that area. Men that are in this place hide their issues because they’ve bought into the lie that they’ve got their secret freedom to do what they want, but deep down they wish they were free from that issue.

The loving gospel of Jesus speaks to everyone one these issues.

1. Level Ground:  Jesus through the beautiful cross exposed all men as being weak and in need of him. If all men are weak without God that means “your normal.” Jesus comes to give men his strength as they bring Him their weaknesses. Owning your weakness is the first step toward repentance.

2. The Divine Mirror:  The Holy Spirit points to all truth. If you ask for God to reveal to you area that you are not seeing. He will: through His word, through others and by His Spirit. Here’s the catch: what will you do with what he shows you? (See #1)

3. Band of Brothers: Every man needs an ally. Someone to be in the foxhole of life. Jesus not only brings men to himself, He brings men together. Allow God to help you step out in bold friendship with another guy to trust, to share, to encourage and to do life together.

Say it with me…”I….need….help”,

Nathan

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>I made the leap onto the Social Networking platform this last December by creating a profile on Facebook. I know this might sound late to some of you but I was very hesitant about the idea of people knowing everything about me or the feeling that it might steal time from an already busy schedule.

While I have found a ton of great benefits in using Facebook (connecting with people and leveraging influence), I have also found a few negatives to these Social Networking sites (Facebook, MySpace, Twitter…etc.). Here are my thoughts:

1. Self-expression overload: This generation highly values self-expression. Everyone seems to desire to have some type of artistic expression and universities are reporting exponential increase in communication majors. With that being said, do you think there is such a thing as too much disclosure? Is it dysfunctional to share EVERYTHING with EVERYONE?

2. Friendships Vs. Acquaintances: Here’s the deal we don’t really have 657 “friends”. Most of them are people we just know. A facebook friend is not always the same as an authentic relationship. Keep a good perspective on having quality relationships not so much focusing on quantity. You don’t want to wake up one day and realize all your relationships are just surface depth.

3. Time Thief: When I first got on to facebook I spent a TON of time online. My family and work paid the price. Saying yes to being online means saying no to: someone else, your work, valued projects that you want to get done and much more. I think it’s a great tool, but not at the cost of friends, family and your legacy paying the price.

Bottom Line: Don’t let your desire to express and connect online overwhelm your desire to connect and express in person.

Still Friends?,

Nathan

>Listen….

Posted: June 2, 2009 in communication, friendship, leadership

>Several weeks ago I was watching T.V. when I happend to look over at my wife. The look on her face spoke volumes that only a husband of 10 years can read. The “look” said this: “I’ve just been talking to you and you haven’t heard a word I’ve been saying.” I proceeded to stop everything and give her my full, undivided attention.

It was a good reminder that there is a huge difference between hearing and listening. Hearing means that you are hearing the audible tones coming out of someones mouth. Listening means you are proactively giving attention to grasp the content that another person is sharing. Are you a hearer or a listener? Hearers act like they’re listening when really they are placating. Hearers mentally prepare their response while the other person is talking. Listeners allow the other person to fully share and then think about their response. Listeners stay present in the moment and ask follow up questions to show that they are following along. Bottomline: Your relationships (personal and business) will only go as far as your ability to listen.

Testing 1, 2, 3,

Nathan