Malcolm Tyree

A collection of thoughts on things that matter

Archive for the tag “Awareness”

I Love a Good Fight!

I’ll admit it, I love a good fight!

Sometimes my wife doesn’t appreciate my passion for this. Sometimes my kids find this exasperating. I’ve been known to wear out my colleagues in a meeting because of this. What can I say, I’m a passionate guy. 

Sometimes, I get carried away. I remember chaperoning a trip to Six Flags with some teenagers. The boys wanted to ride the “Tea Cups” and see how fast we could go. It’s hard for me to back down. I made sure we went as fast as I could get us. I was on the brink of throwing up, but I wasn’t going to quit. Apparently, I wasn’t the only one who was feeling queazy. On the next ride, one of the boys tossed his cookies because of the fight at the Tea Cups.

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Simon Sinek recently tweeted:

Fight against something and we focus on the thing we hate. Fight for something and we focus on the thing we love.

Wow! I’m not sure it could be said any better.

I recently read a blog about all the things the church is doing wrong. Ok, I’ve read several of those blogs (too many to link to). Without a doubt, these bloggers are right about almost everything they post. Some are posting out of their disgust of the church, others are posting out of their disgust for how off track the church has become. There are even a few that are posting as prophetic voices for the church. My favorites are those who are clearly posting because they love the church. Let’s fight for the church!

I along with many others have retweeted, blogged, and posted about #Ferguson and the racial challenges in our society. The fights displayed on this issues have stirred us. What we need to ask ourselves is have we stirred one another to know what we love or what we hate? I want to fight for equality!

I took the #IceBucketChallenge and didn’t fight against the negative sides of the trend. I fought for those need awareness raised about ALS.

Over the past two years, I spent a great deal of my time fighting in a struggling school district. The school district my family was a part of had a huge gap in parental and community involvement. I believe this greatly influenced the struggling test scores and overall impression of the school district. I fought for greater participation and involvement. I entered this fight with the PTA of our school, county, and state. Why did I fight? Because I believe in education and I believe in bettering things. I fought because I love seeing things get better.

In a couple of months, I plan to attend Fight Night with my wife. This marriage enrichment session with Les & Leslie Parrott should be fun. I will fight for my marriage.

This fall, I will enter into a fight with 9 others as we fight to award grants designed to help change the world.

Throughout my life, I want to be known as someone who fights, who loves a good fight! I want my fights to be for things, not against things. I want to be remembered for loving not hating.

Where are you fighting? Is it against something? Are you helping people hate? Or have you chosen to fight for something? Have you inspired them to love?

Go on, jump out there! Start a fight! But make it a good one!

(Think Mel Gibson, Braveheart, “I’m gonna pick a fight!”)

Share your thoughts in the comments. Tell me where you are fighting. Maybe I can encourage you in your fight.

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Ministry Talking Points 1/16/14

Ministry Talking Points is an attempt to share with my audience key thoughts or ideas I’ve seen that I think pastors and church leaders should be talking about.

Bible Study Religious Stock Images

In this issue:

Dennis Rodman a Missionary

Seth Godin: The Problem is Awareness

Pope Francis on Abortion and a Throwaway Culture

Dennis Rodman a Missionary?

It’s crazy to think that the “Bad Boy of Basketball” from my youth is setting an example on how to break down barriers.  The truth is Rodman has always broken the barrier (cross-dressing, dyed hair, strange piercings, tattoos, etc.).  This time, Rodman is working to develop a relationship with the isolated people in North Korea who are being held back by the barriers world leaders have established.  I’m not suggesting Rodman is doing this because he is a Christian or sees himself as a missionary, I don’t know Rodman nor his faith.  I only know what CNN reported one of his teammates, Charles Smith, as saying,

“We went there to do what we normally do, and that’s to be cross-cultural ambassadors and use the game of basketball as a bridge for exchange.”

The willingness to go cross-cultural and be an ambassador is what I see as the missionary act.  When was the last time we saw someone give up the comforts of his culture or world to learn about the culture of another?  I applaud Rodman for his efforts.  If more private citizens took it upon themselves to breakdown cultural barriers, I think we’d see some pretty remarkable things happen in our world.  CNN reports that Smith shared “he has no regrets about going. He said he was able to meet some North Korean citizens and even came across one man who winced before shaking the hand of the first African-American he had ever met. Smith said the man told him they didn’t have a very good view of African-Americans. The man rubbed his hand as if the color would come off, Smith said.”  Kudos to Rodman for breaking the barriers, and for even wishing a Happy Birthday to the North Korean leader.

Seth Godin: “Our biggest problem is awareness”

Let me start by saying, I’m a big Seth Godin fan.  He has a unique ability to articulate keen insights in a few paragraphs.  In this post, Seth reminds us that the key to raising awareness of our cause, group, church, etc. is not to focus on the big one-time event, but rather design our systems so that we are a continually in the conversations. Let me admit this, I’m really good at the big and flashy ideas.  Developing systems I can do.  My challenge is maintaining the system.  How about you?

Pope Francis: “A Throwaway Culture”

This weekend, people around the nation will take part in the remembering the historic ruling of Roe vs.Wade by the United States Supreme Court, as they hold memorials or rallies regarding the sanctity of life and the power of choice.  The news outlets reported Pope Francis recently expressed that abortion was evidence of our “throwaway culture.”  In the past, Francis has elaborated on the “throwaway culture” especially as it relates to food and other resources.  It seems Francis understands the way to overcome the desire for abortion is to address the consumer, self-centered issues of our culture.  When I first heard Francis talk about the “throwaway culture,” food seemed to be the central aspect of the conversation.  I walked away challenged to throwaway less food.  That doesn’t mean I should necessarily “clean my plate,” though I often do.  Rather, I think the challenge is to waste less food.  In that daily practice of wasting less food, could I begin to overcome my consumption desires and my tendency to throwaway things?  What if each of us wasted less food?  Would it cure many of our issues like obesity and world-hunger?  Could it even reduce poverty, abortion, war, and the like?  In Malcolm Gladwell’s book The Tipping Point, he asserts that the reduction of litter and graffiti in New York City led to a reduction of overall crime.  Without a doubt, food is in abundance in the United States.  What if we chose to waste less of it?  Could that curb our desire to consume and throwaway?  I’m going to do my part.

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