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January 14, 2013

Are You a Wonderstruck Leader? (Part 2)

4 ways to restore your awe of God




awe2.jpg

…Continued from Part 1.

As passionate followers of Christ committed to serving others, we must be intentional about nurturing a sense of wonder in our lives and discovering God as “wonderful” each and every day.

The gospels ground us in the truth that those who encountered Jesus were left in wild amazement. Those who encountered Christ were awestruck by his teachings, healings, and mind-bending miracles. Words like “awe,” “wonder,” and “marvel” followed him almost everywhere he went (particularly in the Gospel of Luke).

If you’ve misplaced your sense of marvel somewhere along the way, or perhaps if you just want to nurture an even greater sense of awe, here are four ways to begin living wonderstruck as a leader:

1. Explore the wonder of creation. Sometimes we lose sight of the magnificence of God as Creator—the one who fashioned and holds all things together. To reignite your imagination and appreciation of the wonders of God that dot the solar system and mark the microscopic cells, take a half-hour and use a search engine to look up “astonishing photos” and something found in creation. Some of my favorites are “astonishing photos of waves” or “astonishing photos of spider webs” or “astonishing photos of clouds.” Prepare to be astounded as you drink in images of God’s creation, his intricate involvement, his startling choice of colors, his wild creativity. Take time to thank God for all he has made and reflect on what God’s creation reveals about the Creator.

2. Crash the party in the kids’ Sunday school.
Consider the last time you looked at the world through the life of someone under the age of 10. If you have children, it may have been this morning! But the lens is different when you get to take off your parenting hat and see the world from the perspective of someone else’s child. This Sunday, if you’re not already involved in kids’ ministry, slip out of the service in order to offer your services as a volunteer. Ask the kids questions about what they see, hear, like, and dislike. Kids have an amazing ability to find joy and celebrate the tiniest discoveries and live in constant amazement of our world. Pray that God will allow some of their childlike wonder to rub off on you.

3. Read a writer or theologian who ignites your faith.
Sometimes as leaders we find ourselves reading and listening to the same familiar voices. The teaching may provide what we feel we need, but somewhere along the way the writing and text can become predictable and we don’t even realize it’s happening. To reignite the wonder of Scripture, pick up a writer or theologian who uses unexpected imagery or unpacks biblical passages in a thought-provoking way. Allow Madeleine L’Engle to stir your holy imagination. Invite Barbara Brown Taylor to challenge the way you think about a sermon or teaching. Reflect on G. K. Chesterton to reignite the feistiness and merriment of your faith. Reach for the unfamiliar theologian who—though you may not always agree—stirs your hunger for God’s Word and reignites the wonder of Scripture.

4. Listen to someone’s story. Sometimes serving and working in a church or non-profit, we can become so task-oriented that we miss the people right in front of us. We forget that we are surrounded by men and women whose lives have been transformed forever by a living God. The wonder is all around us but we fail to drink in the fullness simply because we don’t pause to listen to the living testimonies of grace all around us. Just a few doors down from your office, right across the aisle between the pews, right next to you in the church choir is a story waiting to be shared that will take your breath away. God’s goodness, faithfulness, love are waiting to be discovered anew.

You don’t have to wait another day to begin reigniting the wonder of God in your life.

Margaret Feinberg is a popular speaker and author of Wonderstruck: Awaken to the Nearness of God book and 7-session DVD Bible study. You can learn more at www.margaretfeinberg.com/wonderstruck. You can also follow Margaret on Twitter at www.twitter.com/mafeinberg.

Comments

Very inspiring. All blessings for you and your efforts to do good!

Why not do the obvious? Pray for the sick to be healed. Pray for miracles. Pray for the gifts of the Holy Spirit. I just returned from an evangelical healing conference at Bethel Church in Redding California. Hundreds were healed of physical ailments by simple prayer in the name of Jesus! We came away wonderstruck and are praying for the sick in our church now too and seeing results! It is awesome!!

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