My Friday, tidy office is mysteriously messy by Monday. Here’s what I found today:
1. A copy of John Steinbeck’s Journals that he kept while writing The Grapes of Wrath. I let someone borrow it (I can’t remember who), and they secretly returned it! (Thank you!) I love reading and books, and I also love loaning them out. Most of my books sit unused on my shelves, so it’s great when someone can use them. Yesterday I mentioned The Screwtape Letters in sermon discussion, and afterward one person asked to borrow it…and I couldn’t find it! I suppose I’ll just have to get another copy. Thank you, Faith Church, for putting a continuing education fund in the budget so I can buy books! And a quick word about Steinbeck’s GoW Journals. He is my favorite author, so it is a treat to read what was going on behind the scenes in his mind, in his life when he wrote one of the greatest pieces of American Lit. So if you are going to write the next great American novel, keep a journal at the same time!
2. Home-made card. I’ll admit, this was partially a plant. My daughter gave me a super-cool card she made, and I brought it from home to keep in my office. It was a special card, and displaying it in my office is a way I can show her how much I appreciate it.
3. Family Night Schedule. This was a surprising find in my office, and I actually wonder if it got here by mistake. Faith Church Family Nights happen six times each year, on the first Wednesday evening of six months. Groups within the church take turns making the meal, and afterwards we have a program. Often the programs are presentations by someone in our church family who went on a recent mission trip. In March one of our ladies will be talking about a trip she took to Boone, North Carolina, to work with Operation Christmas Child, the shoebox outreach. At Christmas, people fill shoeboxes with items and toys to help kids in developing lands. I love Family Night because it’s great spending time with our church family and hearing about what God is up to!
4. Humilitas. I thank my friend Joseph Rahm for this recommendation. It’s a great little book about the “lost key to life, love and leadership”. (Read the intro here.) Maybe you can tell by the title what the lost key is. Humility! When is the last time that you thought about humility as the essential trait of leaders? Dickson does an amazing job making his point, and I recommend the book highly. We’re using it at Faith Church for our first ever Leadership Gym, which is a small group of potential leaders. In six sessions (twice/month) we’ll work through the book, and then develop an individualized plan for each participant, teaming them up with leader-mentors in the church. Our desire is to raise up leaders. We had our first meeting last night, and it was fun! We met at Conestoga Valley Christian Community Services, the local food and clothing bank, started by the churches of the CV Ministerium. After taking a tour of the facility, we discussed the first couple chapters. Dickson is very thought-provoking and on target: leaders simply must be humble.
5. A pair of gloves. That was my fault…I wore them here Sunday morning and forgot to bring them home. Whew…it has been a long, cold, snowy winter here in Lancaster! The snow sure has been beautiful, but I’ll admit I’m looking forward to putting those gloves away for Spring.
Now it’s time to clean up!