Are You Living (Or Just Loving) The Story?

livingI love what I do! I love to tell others about what I do!

I get to go to work every day and use my business to try to impact people all around me for eternity! I have the privilege and opportunity to mentor and teach what I believe is Truth to everyone who works in our company. I get to work with people of like mind and overcome the challenges inherent in running a business from a Christian perspective! I really do love what I do, but I have a problem.

Background

Before I disclose the problem, let me tell you how I discovered it. At the Catalyst conference in October, I had the surprise of hearing a potent message from someone that I had never heard of before. The speaker’s name was Eugene Cho, pastor of Quest Church in Seattle, WA and founder of an incredible organization called One Day’s Wages. You really need to take a look at what this organization does!

The message that Cho gave was very simple, but extremely powerful! He talked about how our nation is one of abundant resources. Our families are extremely wealthy in relation to the rest of the world. We have basic amenities that the rest of the world considers luxuries. We have an incredible capacity for ideas and creativity. The problem he sees with all of this is that we are in danger of being more in love with the ideas than with the actions that should result from them!

Did you catch that last statement? Take another look!

…we are in danger of being more in love with the ideas than with the actions that should result from them!

Telling vs. Living

livingLet’s take a closer look at what this means. How is this evident in our daily lives? For an example, think about how social media has exploded with people telling stories to everyone that will listen. Every day, people talk and talk about what is going on around them – sharing the stories with their friends and coworkers. We all love a good story, whether we are telling it or hearing it! The problem, as Cho put it, is that too many are busy telling the good story and not enough people are living a good story!

Look at this picture of an actual sign that reflects this very problem!

I Am Guilty

So, what does this have to do with my problem? I think I have the very problem that Cho described. While I may not have a terminal case of it, I can certainly see symptoms of it in my life. Too often, I enjoy telling the story about what I am doing in trying to integrate my faith into our business. Too often, I like to learn about new ways to run our business according to our Christian faith. Too often, I am in love with the story of a Christian business. The problem is that too often, I am not taking enough action to make it happen!

As a result of this message from Eugene Cho, I am committing to:

    (1) Quit just telling the story
    (2) Quit just loving the story
    (3) Make more effort to be actually living the story!

In my life and in our company, I am going to make more of an effort to address the gaps between ideas and actions! I am going to close these gaps and take more action. I will continue to tell this story on this blog, but I will be making more of an effort to describe actions rather than just ideas. I hope this makes sense to you. If so, I encourage you to do the same.

What are the gaps between your ideas and actions?

Are you comfortable with them?

What are you going to do about it?

(Originally posted 11/02/11)

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  • http://undistractedchristian.com/ Tyler Hess

    It is always important to be able to apply what you’re teaching or preaching…but a good story isn’t a bad way to start it, even Jesus told great parables ;)

    • http://www.ChristianFaithAtWork.com/ Chris Patton

      You are right, Tyler. I guess I see a problem when ALL I am doing is telling the story and not getting busy living it! A good balance is the key, I think.

  • http://www.tnealtarver.wordpress.com TNeal

    Thought provoking article that resonates with something already simmering in my mind. My last post wrote about the healthy ingredients to community but I realized, in this case, I was writing about a dream rather than an experience. I dream of a creative, collaborative, delightful, and sacrificial community of Christ followers but I’m not living that dream. The two words that especially made me think deeper were creative and sacrificial. Thanks, Chris, for deepening those thoughts for me.

    • http://www.ChristianFaithAtWork.com/ Chris Patton

      Your book certainly made me think about some personal issues I have been dealing with. I am glad to return the favor!

  • Rajeev

    Thanks Bro Chris For Wonderful Message !! I Still Remembers Years Back i had Written One Book By One Servant Of God and There was Wonderful Message Where i Read this Written ” A bell’s not a bell till you ring it , A song’s not a song till you sing it , Love’s not love till you give it away.” We Should Be Not Only A Believer’s But A Believer’s In Action. It is So Wonderful To Act On The Word Of God . My Pastor had told me When i was New Believer . When We Act on His Word Then We See Results. We See God’s Word Doing What They Says. Faith Without Works Is Dead. Just Simply I Started Acting On The Word Of God and All The Times Seen God Doing What He Promised To Do . That’s Wonderful . Praise The Lord !! Thanks Bro Chris