Wednesday, July 23, 2008

A lesson from Johnny Bunko (Part 3)

A lesson from Johnny Bunko (Part 1)

A lesson from Johnny Bunko (Part 2)

Of the last week I've been writing comments on the 6 lesson from the Adventures of Johnny Bunko: the Last Career Guide You'll Ever Need by Dan Pink. To reiterate, Pink doesn't specifically write from a world view reflecting the teachings of the Bible, but I think that his point correspond to some biblical principles. Today I will complete the final two lessons. Allow me to list all six again:
  • There is no plan
  • Think strengths, not weaknesses
  • It's not about you
  • Persistence trumps talent
  • Make excellent mistakes
  • Leave an imprint
Make excellent mistakes. Many Christians would challenge this point. We serve a perfect God; we aught not strive for anything less that perfection, or Mistakes are sins, they might say. I disagree with this perfectionistic thinking. God doesn't expect us to be without imperfection, rather he makes us perfect.

On the other hand, we see many examples of places in the scripture where God challenges people to be stretched beyond their abilities. In that, mistakes happen, but he is faithful to guide us through those mistakes. Job made mistakes of being frustrated, nearly giving up on God. God still held him up and honored him. Moses was weak at times, not wanting to represent Israel and challenging a Egyptian to his death. David made mistakes. Yet, God holds both David and Moses as great leaders. Peter, who was Jesus' right hand man, was always sticking his foot in his mouth as he tried to think beyond his capabilities. Yet, Jesus challenged him with leading the early church.

Sure God punished appropriately Moses, David and Peter for their sinful or faithless acts, but he strengthend them to continue forward. Mistakes came mostly as they were challenged to expand their leadership and their creativity. Think about it. When Peter stuck his foot in his mouth, he was the only disciple that was willing to speak at all. He was being a leader testing new ideas.

Leave and imprint. This one is clear to me. Leaving an imprint is a matter of your legacy. Obviously, as followers of Christ, we need to leave a legacy that points people back to Jesus. If you're a parent, the imprint you should leave is the life you live in Christ before your children. If you're a neighbor, the imprint is how you love your neighbor unconditionally. If you work in an office, it is your integrity and the way you put other's needs first. (See Lesson # 3.)

I guess you can leave an imprint by chasing money. Howard Hughes did. But wouldn't you rather leave on like Billy Graham, Mother Theresa, James Hudson Taylor (Overseas Missionary Fellowship), or Everett Swanson (Compassion International). Not everyone will have the opportunity to be on a stage as big as these folks, but you can make a similar impact by living your life for the poor or to help others know God grace personally.

Leaving an imprint is about having a goal. Lesson #1 was that we don't have a plan, that's something different. We don't plan the end, but we work to make the lives of others better that the world will be a better place for our being here. I think that's the kind of imprint that God would have us make.

I think the 6 Lessons of Johnny Bunko are excellent teaching points for people who want to know how to serve God better. My hope is that all people can learn to use the tools that they have to serve God and make the world a better place.