I heard the term “metanoia” used in a sermon recently. It means to transform in one’s way of life resulting from penitence or spiritual conversion. The priest used the term in the context of using the Lenten season to last beyond just the 40 days of Lent. He simplified the term to mean to change yourself on the “inside” and then your behaviors and actions to become a better person and a person more in alignment with God’s plan for what He really wants us to be. This change is accomplished through actions on the person’s part, hard work, and real effort, not just through “wishing/hoping” to change. Metanoia is first a change of heart that then drives a change in behaviors. It is an external change (actions) driven by an internal change.
The First Strike
On June 2nd, 1984, Columbia Pictures shocked the world with the first installment of the Karate Kid franchise. It resonated on several deep levels for many Americans both young and old. Young Daniel moves to California from the East Coast with his single mother. He realizes there is a huge divide between the middle-class and upper-class communities despite their close proximity to each other.
Daniel (Ralph Macchio) gets into an ongoing conflict with one of the rich kids at his high school, Johnny Lawrence (William Zabka), when he befriends Johnny’s girlfriend Ali Mills (Elisabeth Shue).
One of the most disturbing rhythms in cardiology is called Atrial Fibrillation (AFib), an erratic and irregular heart rhythm that poses multiple problems from fatigue to strokes. Whether it’s by simple medications or invasive means, I will do anything to change my patient’s heart rate to a regular and controlled rhythm. At the end, however, it is not whether one has AFib or not; the real question is what caused the Afib.
When we take “spiritual vitals” it becomes evident that many Christ-followers are living in “Atrial Fibrillation,” where their hearts and souls are disturbed, filled with doubt, unbelief, anxiety, and fear. This translates into a spiritual “stroke,” rendering the Christ-follower weak, unsteady, and powerless. What is the cause of a powerless life and can it be overcome?
To say productivity is important is an understatement, but it’s especially important when you work away from your team. Not only because you want to stay employed (if you don’t get your work done you won’t have a job very long) but your team relies on you getting your work done and being productive. That’s one of the main differences between being a team member and being a teammate.
Admittedly some days that’s easier than others. We all have times we feel stuck, and when you’re a long-distance teammate you don’t have someone in the next cube to help you. And let’s face it, occasionally it’s your teammates being the reason you’re stuck. Constant interruptions on Slack or through text messages, too many meetings, multiple requests for help…All this creates the big question: How do you manage your own performance while being a good teammate?
A stellar group leader is first a very good person, a role model in character and behavior. Further, in demeanor and approach, an effective leader emanates the “feel” of being part of the group rather than above it. Examples include endeavoring to talk with instead of to the group in tone and substance and working hands-on as part of the group instead of its boss in group-related projects and activities.
Recognize that you are a Role Model
People follow and readily acknowledge leaders that they respect. Like it or not, life-quality and authentic leadership go hand in hand. Like children with parents, people tend to and should watch how leaders live and react to circumstances more than they hear them. Thus, living lays the foundation (or not) for people to actually listen to you (actions and words) and embrace your position as a leader.