Friday, March 15, 2013

Keys or Locks?

Last week as I walked through a parking lot I stumbled upon a lost key.  I looked at it and found myself wondering who lost it and what it opened.  As I pondered my discovery, it occurred to me that we all have keys.  We go through life collecting keys of experience and knowledge that will open problems and challenges locked away from those without our perspective and wisdom gathered through the years.

Then there are the locks that need to be opened.  They are the things we strive to overcome and have the potential to keep us from our 'promised land.'  We all have keys and locks but we do not all approach them in the same way.  Some of us are looking for keys and some of us are looking for locks.  What kind of person are you?  Maybe you are struggling to find a reason and purpose for a very difficult experience which has come into your life; you have the lock but are looking for a key.  Or perhaps you are at peace with the challenges of your life but do not know how to share that perspective with others; you have the key and are looking for the lock.  That's why we need one another - to share our keys and locks and help each other meet the common (and not so common) tests of life with a victorious perspective. We may have the very thing that will bring meaning or significance to someone else's lock or key.

Try to keep that in mind when you have a difficult experience and are presented with a lock or when you uncover an answer and find a key.  There may be someone very near you who needs what you have. Keys and locks; we all have them, but are we using them to the greatest advantage or are they lost in the parking lot of our life?

"The school of life is so tough because the tests come first and the lessons only afterward."

Tuesday, January 24, 2012


“Carve your name on hearts, not tombstones. A legacy is etched into the minds of others and the stories they share about you.”

~ Shannon L. Alder

“Those things, which ye have both learned, and received, and heard, and seen in me, do: and the God of peace shall be with you.” Philippians 4:9 (KJV)

“And the things that thou hast heard of me among many witnesses, the same commit thou to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also.” 2 Timothy 2:2 (KJV)


Multiplication is just a very fast and efficient form of addition. If you want to leave your mark in life, this is one math fact which you will want to embrace, because multiplication is the best way to ensure your legacy. It is though the lives of others you invest in as a mentor, that you can have your greatest impact.

We sometimes call a person being mentored - a disciple. A disciple is a person who follows a leader and they do something more; a disciple reproduces themself in the lives of others who come after them. So we have two important aspects of discipleship; copy and multiply. These two ideas can change your life and even change the world! If you don’t multiply your beliefs, practices and experience in the lives of others, they will soon be lost.

Do you remember the Star Wars movies? They tell about a religious sect called the Jedi who had a very strict system of training their understudies called "Padawans." Their whole plan went wrong when they failed to properly mentor and govern one from among their own ranks and he became their nemesis. Darth Vader was a disciple … but of the wrong leader. He became the Dark Lord of the universe as a direct result of ineffective discipleship by the Jedi. I am not saying that if you do not properly disciple those under you, they will bring the universe to ruin - but it is something to think about. What could you be doing right now to properly guide those who look to you for leadership?

The philosophy of reproducing ourself through others relates to raising our children as well as training our employees and the impact we have on any others who may be looking to us for leadership. It is a universal truth that we will reap what we have sown.

I have been blessed to have a series of great men who have invested in my life to guide me when I needed it. It has not always been easy to receive their input but because the relationships were built on love and trust, there was a solid foundation making it easier. We all need to be looking around us for someone we can invest in and for someone to invest in us – it flows both ways. I never met a successful leader who did not have a series of mentors helping them and I never met a wise man who did not seek to mentor others. The choice is yours to take this admonition seriously; copy and multiply. That is the best way any of us can leave a lasting legacy and assure our long-term success.

Essential Insight – “Multiplication is the only math that really adds up.”