Our Releasing Kings feedback page (You Wrote Back) reads like we filter all the negative feed back out. Really we don’t. We just get a ton of positive feed back. So much so that I mentioned it to my friend, Jim Bryson, and he graciously mailed back an area of imbalance.

Sooo…we’re hosting disagreement day in this newsletter. One of the best ways to depth sound your convictions is to contrast them with the opposite position. Jim Bryson is a good friend and I benefit from his comments. He helped edit Releasing Kings. He’s particularly helpful because he naturally gravitates to opinions different than my own… He comes complete with a different personality, different gifts, different tastes, and different motivations. Our conversations are always interesting before we figure out the middle ground. I used to think of that as compromising – the process of diluting truth until stubborn people get on the same side – my side. Now I’ve adopted a more Jewish approach. Understanding truth is connecting the opposing tensions that hold it in balance. This could be a series so I’m inviting you to email me your area of disagreement. If you do, we’ll convert this into disagreement month and really learn something. The only prerequisite is that you have to actually read Releasing Kings first.

Meet Jim

– Yeah, you know…there is this stupid optimism on the part of Christians who are unencumbered by the thought process. Our emphasis on faith and positive confession causes us to buy into anything as if our belief alone can turn a pig into a purse. No such thing, though. I believe failure is a taskmaster, if only we accept the lesson, get up, and move on. Note the operative phrase here: GET UP. The hardest thing to do after a fall: get back up.

I stress, too, the need to emphasize in your writing the average, hardworking Joe who saves a bit out of every pay check and at the end of his/her working life, has a few bucks in the bank with which to retire, maybe buy a boat (or bike, or a horse) and have some fun.

The saver is every bit a King. Lack of entrepreneurial endeavors does not disqualify a person. In fact, WE NEED THEM. They balance out the more adventurous among us, those that would (and do) bet the farm on a whim and a prayer. Again: do not neglect the conservative saver, investor, thinker. So much of this so far seems to favor the risk taker. And it seems to glorify the risk taker. If you want to highlight risk taking entrepreneurs, then write about their failures as much as you write about their successes. I’m guessing that you’ll find a ratio of 5 to 1. 5 failures (at least) for every 1 success. I’m also guessing that for many – but not all – the success outweighs the failure. You could do an entire newsletter on failure. It’ll be good for ’em. Scare ’em a little bit.

Scare ’em

– OK, you asked for it.

1.Business – 90% of all business starts fail in the first year.

2.Investing – Venture capitalists invest in 10 things and expect half to fail, 3 or 4 to be mediocre, and 1 or 2 to be good.

3.Network marketing – a friend who’s career is in network marketing told me the most popular company, who’s name I won’t mention, had to have 13,000 people in their down line before they made an engineers salary… made me want to keep working!

4.In the end all Christians die no matter what their occupation.

5.Solomon summed it up best in the following verse. Vanity is used 33 times in the book of Ecclesiastes alone – makes an interesting study.

Vanity of vanities, saith the Preacher, vanity of vanities; all is vanity Eccl 1:2
He that loveth silver shall not be satisfied with silver; nor he that loveth abundance with increase: this is also vanity. Eccl 5:10 KJV

Why Try?

– Why take a risk and become entrepreneurial? God is simply tugging on the hearts of Kings. Regardless of personality, many in this hour are being drawn to their dream. They simply can no longer grind out their entire lives working on someone else’s dream in exchange for an hourly wage and then retire for golf. Their hearts won’t allow them to. Every Christian has some corner of his spiritual walk where there is a dream. Our real message is that it’s important to pursue that dream in your heart’s desire… not recklessly or irresponsibly. We come alive when we start to pursue the unique dream that God has in our hearts. We die a little bit when we give up on it.

Note to Joe

– We don’t intend to depreciate hard-working “Joes” that work for a salary and retire on a pension to enjoy life. We just say there may be something more exciting that resides in their heart. Similarly, we know God can and does heal disease, but we don’t “blame” people that die of cancer. We know that healing is real; so we contend for it in every way possible. We know that a lifestyle directed toward expanding the Kingdom is possible and so we’re contending for that too, in every way possible…. OK Jim, I think I may have just depreciated them again (sorry).

Are Christians Gullible?

There is some level of risk in every step of faith. However, there is a tendency in Christians to get a green light from the Holy Spirit and then proceed to commit fiscal suicide. Why? Many believe that once we have the direction of God He will then sovereignly protect us from failure… He doesn’t. This is a doctrinal issue. God really does allow us to “make” decisions and reap the consequences. He doesn’t spell out every detail and relay it to us via the Holy Spirit. Servants wish He would… friends know He doesn’t. Maturity is walking with God, not behind Him.

Real life is more practical than we realize. When the Holy Spirit prompts us to move toward a dream, we often skip the counsel of those with more experience. Also, that fatherly counsel in practical areas is often scarce. We haven’t valued the wisdom of businessmen in spiritual circles. Due diligence, business plans, and exit strategies should be the “spiritual” disciplines for Kings moving into a new area.

Jim’s got a good point on this one. If anyone has a purse made out of a pig, please gift wrap it and send it to him with a thank you note.

Is it OK to Have Fun?

– Absolutely. I have 9 horses (see www.garfieldranch.com). Here’s what I’ve found. Fun for a servant is getting away from it all. Friends and Kings that are connected to their heart’s desires really enjoy what they do and are energized by it. They will usually do more than one thing for fun, but the need to escape the boredom of their daily routine isn’t there. They love what they do.

What will Heaven be like

– I once heard a sermon about the 4 and 20 elders bowing before the throne for all eternity. The suggestion was that that’s what we would do. It scared me. I love God, but I’m not drawn to clouds, harps, streets of gold, or mansions. We don’t really know much about the detail of what Heaven will be like… we’re not even sure where it will be (might be on earth at least for one millennium). Here’s why I think it’s important to pursue your heart’s desire. Our relationship with God will extend right into eternity. We’ll walk with the Father then, just like we can now. I think we’ll still have opportunities for responsibility, creativity, and making decisions. In the bigger scheme of things, eternity starts now. Don’t wait for the next life to enjoy this one. Relationally, heaven will be a continuation of the walk with God we have right now. Be Kingly – take the initiative to make a difference… be creative, innovative, adventurous, entrepreneurial, responsible and generous. Be like Jesus.

“‘Well done, my good servant!’ his master replied. ‘Because you have been trustworthy in a very small matter, take charge of ten cities .’ Luke 19:17

Life is an adventure. People are a blessing. God is amazing. We’re winning.