It is a wonderful feeling when the wind fills the sail, the boat surges forward and lays over powered by the breeze! It is a metaphor for life when we know that our sail is full and what we were meant to be is what is and we are - almost effortlessly being propelled by unseen forces. Life isn't always like that but when it is the exhilaration is palpable!

Sailors don't control the wind and neither do we. But there are practices or habits we can cultivate that are likely to help us catch the wind when it comes.

Staying fresh with Jesus is the first habit. How we do that is different for each of us but keeping the connection fresh is always the place to start. For me that means enough rest and time for reflection because my ability to live in His presence diminishes with fatigue. When rested I can feel His presence and His pleasure. When tired, I am just tired. Knowing our rhythms of connection and syncing those with our lives becomes key. As Jesus said in John 15, "remain in me and you will bear much fruit."

Living in my sweet spot so that I am operating out of my strengths is the second habit. Too much time operating in areas of weakness frustrates, fatigues and drains us. Optimally we are working in areas of strength not less than 60% of our time and it is wonderful if it is 80%. The wind is very hard to catch when we are playing to weaknesses rather than strengths. That will often mean that we say no to many things in order to say yes to certain things so that we live and work in areas of strength.

Knowing and paying attention to the big rocks of our lives is the third habit. When the distractions and busyness of life take us away from those things that are most important to us they steal the wind from our sails. Just as sailing is for the patient, positioning the boat and the sail for maximum advantage, so is life. I position the sail of my life for maximum advantage when I am paying attention to the big rocks of my life rather than being distracted by less important activities.

Finding time for ministry in connection with my strengths and wiring is the fourth habit. This is one of those big rocks that puts wind in the sail when I make time for it because each of us was made for unique works of ministry prepared by God just for us (Ephesians 2:10). The Holy Spirit fills our sails when we join Him in the work he created us for.

Each of these habits is dependent on one final habit: time for reflection and evaluation of our lives. Our constant activity robs us of time to think and therefore of the ability to live with the wisdom that comes from God's prompting and a balanced life as defined by these habits. Activity is often the enemy of real life results. Again it is the patience to position the sails of our lives so that we are most likely to catch the wind when it comes.

When the wind does come, catching it is a wonderful experience.
  • Jul 12, 2009
  • Category: News
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