Dismantling Shame

Excerpt from Tattoos on the Heart by Gregory Boyle believing our dignity before God.

“At Homeboy Industries, we seek to tell each person this truth: they are exactly what God had in mind when God made them—and then we watch, from this privileged place, as people inhabit this truth.

Nothing is the same again. No bullet can pierce this, no prison walls can keep this out. And death can’t touch it—it is just that huge.

But much stands in the way of this liberating truth. You need to dismantle shame and disgrace, coaxing out the truth in people who’ve grown comfortable believing its opposite.”

Three Components to Casting a Compelling

Three Components to Casting a Compelling Vision
By Mark Dance

Does your vision rob you of your sleep? Quicken your pulse? Change your community and world? I want to explore what makes a vision so compelling that it is difficult to ignore or oppose.

Your Vision Must Be a Conviction
Your vision will only burn as bright as you do. When this passion comes from deep within you, people will sense it and follow it. A vision is something you not only see in your mind, but also burns in your heart.

“An opinion is something you’ll argue about; a conviction is something you’ll die for.”—Will Mancini

People will not be more dedicated than you are to the vision. The outcome is a willingness to sacrifice. This sacrifice can be seen in time, energy, and financial resources. If this is not something you are willing to personally risk your reputation and resources on, it’s not worth pursuing. It’s merely an idea, not a vision.
Does your vision inspire you to the point of personal commitment?

Check out the rest of the article: http://ow.ly/NOfP306hNCZ

Who are leaders?

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Dan Allender gives a great definition of a leader in his book Leading with a Limp.

“A leader is anyone who has someone following her. If anyone looks to you for wisdom, counsel, or direction, then you are a leader. If there is one little girl who looks at you and says, “Mommy,” then you are a leader. If there are fourteen high-energy boys holding aluminum weapons and screaming that they want to be first to hit the ball that rests on a rubber T-ball frame, then you are a leader.

It takes only one child grabbing your finger with a small, sometimes-trembling hand to signify that you are a leader. And from your child’s birth to the day you pass from this earth, you will continue to make life-shaping decisions as a parent. And of course it’s not just parents who lead with such power and influence. Anyone who wrestles with an uncertain future on behalf of others— anyone who uses her gifts, talents, and skills to influence the direction of others for the greater good— is a leader.

No one is a mere follower. If you are a follower of God, for instance, then you are called to lead. Every believer is called to help someone grow into maturity— and such is the core calling of a leader.”

Check out his book 

 

 

 

Grace Changes Everything

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A passage from Forgotten among the Lilies by Ronald Rolheiser (quoted in Common Prayer) :

“If the Catholicism that I was raised in had fault, and it did, it was precisely that it did not allow for mistakes.  It demanded that you get it right the first time.  There was suppose to be no need for a second chance.

If you made a mistake, you lived with it and, like the rich young man, were doomed to be sad, at least for the rest of your life.  A serious mistake was a permanent stigmatization, a mark that you wore like Cain.

I have seen that mark on all kinds of people: divorcees, ex-priests, ex-religious, people who have had abortions, married people who had affairs, people who have had children outside of marriage, parents who have made serious mistakes.  There is too little around to help them.

We need a theology of brokenness.  We need a theology which teaches us that even though we cannot unscramble an egg, God’s grace lets us live happily and with renewed innocence far beyond any egg we may have scrambled.  We need a theology that teaches us that God does not just give us one chance, but that every time we close a door, he opens on for us.”