Archive for the ‘CRAZY LOVE’ Category

One of the biggest things I have learned about being a leader is you WILL be criticized. Being criticized hurts but it is worth it! John Maxwell says, “When you get kicked in the rear, you know you are out front.”

Not everyone handles criticism the same. Some try to ignore it. Some try to defend themselves against it. Others, make witty and sarcastic remarks to put a critic in his place. The truth is, if you are a leader you WILL get criticized.

There are three things I have learned to use as a filter when being criticized:

1.) Who criticized me?– If it is coming from someone close to you or someone you admire or look up to then the criticism is worth looking into.

2.) How was the criticism given?- I try to give everyone the benefit of the doubt. You have to determine if the person was being judgmental or do they have real concern.

3.) Why was the criticism given?- Was it given out of personal hurt or for my benefit? When people are feeling hurt by you they will lash out and criticize you. Hurting people want to hurt other people.

Once I have used those filters during a moment of criticism I then work through what I was being criticized about. I try not to be defensive. I look for the grain of truth in the criticism. Then, I make changes if I need to.

I have learned that secure leaders never need to defend themselves. Even when the person who is criticizing is so far off from the truth. If you worry about what other people think about you it’s because you have more confidence in their opinion than you have in your own.

As I have learned this principle of “When you are getting kicked in the rear, you know you are out front” I think back to all the criticism I took early on as a leader. I use to respond to it with anger or sarcastic remarks. Now, I filter through the three things you read above. It is much easier to sleep at night when you filter through those principles.

When you are a leader you WILL be criticized! Know that it is worth it!

– Kyle

@KyleJackson1

I have 2 friends that I played college baseball with that are making their way through Minor League baseball on the way to the Bigs. I had the opportunity to talk with both of them on the phone recently as they were finishing up Spring Training in AZ. and was blown away by some of the answers they gave me to some questions I was strategically asking about baseball but listening to their answers with a Ministry mindset.

Lance Zawadski (Triple-A for the Kansas City Royals) played several games for the Padres last season before being traded is a switch hitting SS/2B that is a phenomenal defensive player and hits for power from both sides of the plate. (http://mlb.mlb.com/team/player.jsp?player_id=453368#sectionType=career&statType=1&season=&gameType=’R’)

Brad Coon (Triple-A for the Los Angelis Dodgers) is in his 6th year of Minor League ball. He was with the Angels for 4 years, Nationals for 1 and now will start his 6th season with the Dodgers. He is a speedy left-handed center fielder that hits lead-off and steals 30-40 bases a year. Brad hit a walk-off HR last year in Spring Training in AZ for the Angels. (http://losangeles.angels.mlb.com/team/player.jsp?player_id=488795#sectionType=career&statType=1&season=&gameType=’R’)

Questions I asked Lance and Brad:

1.) What is the biggest difference between Minor League Baseball and Major League Baseball?

Amazingly they gave the exact same answer: “The biggest difference is in Minor League Baseball you can get away with certain weaknesses, but in the Majors, every weakness you have will be EXPLOITED and it will be exploited quick. In Minor League baseball only a few teams know your weakness, in the Majors EVERYONE knows your weaknesses!”

As a leader in ministry, the larger your ministry gets the more your weaknesses are going to be EXPLOITED! You can get away with some things in the Minors that only a few people know about, but in the Majors your weakness WILL be known and they WILL be exploited quickly!

2.) What is the difference in preparing for a Double-A game and a Major League Game?

Again, they gave the same answer: “You can show up at the park 3 hours before a minor league game and stretch, Take BP, throw and be successful. In the Majors you have to prepare daily! You have to do your reasearch on everything and chances are you still want have a “great” game! You have to be so mentally tough or you will get run over!”

As a leader in ministry, the more influence you have the more ready you have to be to answer questions, take the heat, be challenged by others and more. You can’t just show up at the park and half way prepare, you have to be prepared daily.

3.) What has been the toughest challenge for you after moving up to the Big Leagues?

Lance: “Learning the day-to-day routine of being a Major League player. It’s so different being in the spotlight. Everything you do or say people are ready to pounce on you! You have to be mentally tough.”

Brad: “Thinking I have to change who I am as a player after one bad at bat or one bad game. I think I have to change everything about my stance and swing after one bad day. I am a singles hitter, that steals bases and plays good defence. That’s what got me here. I don’t have to be something I’m not!”

WOW…Let both of those answers sink in a little! In the ministry sometimes you feel like people are just waiting for you to do or say the “wrong” thing. Everyone has their opinion of what you should do or who you should be. Be who you are and do what got you to the place you are in. Don’t be afraid to change, but always revert back to who you are at a heart level. Know who you are and what you do well and stick with it!

4.) What is the biggest misconception about Major League players?

Lance: “That people think that just because we are Big League players we slack off. The biggest surprise to me was watching from the dugout some of the best players in the game consistently running on and off the field hard and running out ground balls hard. People see what they want on TV and assume what they want from a distance. It is not always true.”

Brad: “That we are all the same! Cocky, Above the law, non-appreciative guys. So untrue. There are unhappy people everywhere in life no matter what you do! That does not mean everyone you work with or everyone in you profession is the same. But people believe what they want and make their own opinions about you without even knowing you.”

The more influence you gain, the more scrutiny you will take! People will  make their own opinions about you when they have never met you. They will watch from a distance and try to tear you down.

What Can We Do: 1.) Get accountable about your weaknesses so they will not get Exploited. 2.) Prepare Daily. 3.) Know who you are at a heart level. 4.) Don’t worry about the misconceptions about who you are.

AUBURN- 22            OREGON- 19

This past weekend I was fortunate to go to Glendale, AZ for the 2010 National Championship Game! I have waited 28 years for Auburn to be in the National Championship game! It was an incredible experience! Auburn brought 50-70 thousand fans, who paid anywhere from $500.00-$4,000 for a ticket! And that is just to the game!!!

For the 4 days I was there I watched the culture of Auburn. I watched the current students, little kids,  recent graduates & old alumni smile, scream, cry & jump up and down like cheerleaders after a touchdown! (This includes myself). Everyone dresses the same, says the same things, talks the same, knows the same chants and cheers. You could tell an Auburn fan apart from anyone else in AZ! We have waited for so long for this moment! Our football team had made it to the top of college football! And we WON! Nothing could be better!

On my flight home I was reading out of Philippians & I began to reflect on the weekend. This thought came across my mind; “What if Jesus cam back today? Would you scream until your voice is gone, would you jump up and down, would you cry?”

To be completely honest with you, I could not answer the question in my mind! That is what I would say I would do, but immediately I had selfish thoughts: “There is so much more I want to accomplish, I want to be a dad, I want to travel there…etc.”

Is Auburn football more exciting and more important to me than Eternity?

Philippians 3:7-14 ” But whatever were gains to me I now consider loss for the sake of Christ.  What is more, I consider everything a loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them garbage, that I may gain Christ  and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ—the righteousness that comes from God on the basis of faith.  I want to know Christ—yes, to know the power of his resurrection and participation in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death,  and so, somehow, attaining to the resurrection from the dead.  Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already arrived at my goal, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me.  Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead,  I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.”                                                                                    

The culture was evident as I looked at Auburn fans this weekend. What is the culture of Christians? Are we willing to give it ALL up?

This is what I am working on in 2011!

-Kyle

5 THINGS I LEARNED IN 2010

Posted: December 22, 2010 by kylejackson10 in CHRISTIAN, CRAZY LOVE, FCA LEE COUNTY, Uncategorized, YOUNG ADULTS

2010 has been a year full of work, family, church, friends, trips, football, conflict, love & did I mention…Work!

Looking back over the course of the year there were 5 things that really stood out to me as I reflected on what a great year it has been.

1.) MINISTRY IS EVERYWHERE: Working in the construction world can sometimes beat down on you. There were times where I just wanted to say, “Screw It” and walk away. Then I discovered a principle that has changed everything I do daily at work. “Know what your passion is and find out how to merge it with your daily work.” My passion is people. Selling construction supplies does not have me jumping out of bed every morning (No offence boss) but the people I work with and the customers I serve have had a tough couple of years due to the economy in SW FL. Now I look for any opportunity to build someone up I work for or work with. There have been countless conversations with superintendents, project managers and co-workers that have been the highlight of my week! Serving others is such a fulfillment. Ministry is Everywhere! 

2.) Change of Pace + Change of Place= Change of Perspective: In June, I went to Peru and hiked the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu. One of the most amazing experiences I have ever had. On the 2nd day of the hike (the hardest day of the 4) we were about 1/2 way to the top and one of the guys I was hiking with made this comment, “Don’t forget to look back to where we started!” I turned to look and I could see our base camp miles and miles away. In that moment I realized that sometimes we get so caught up in where we are headed that we forget to look at where we came from. It is OK to look back into the past. It shows you how far you have come. For me I realized how far I had come personally in the past 3 years. What a great moment in 2010!

3.) MARRIAGE REQUIRES DAILY WORK: Today is my 3rd anniversary with my beautiful wife, Jennifer Jackson. She is my best friend! That does not mean it is always easy, mostly because of me! One of the best things my wife and I have done since we have been married is taking a personality test and then getting as much information as possible about that personality. We also found how each others personality meshed with the others. We have learned how to handle conflict better and how tough conversations can be made a lot easier. There is a way to have healthy conflict! I would recommend anyone to read the book, “Make IT Amazing” by Scott Drummond. (www.makeitamazingbook.com) This book transformed the way Jen and I communicate daily! Our marriage is stronger than it has ever been!

4.) ACCOUNTABILITY IS ESSENTIAL: I meet with 3 of my best friends every Tuesday morning and we have a very intentional accountability group. The key word is “Intentional.” Our meetings are not a time to just sit and chat and joke around, we have other times we can do that. We meet and go through specific questions that we created after we sat down and “Backed the Truck Up,” or told each other everything about our pasts: Pains, Personal struggles, Ugly Moments, Temptations…etc. The Good, Bad and Ugly so to speak! This has allowed me to get things out of my heart (darkness) into the open (light) and wow does it take a load off your shoulders to know that others are dealing with the same junk! I am a better Husband, Son, Friend, Co-Worker, etc. because of this group. If you are interested in the questions we ask please email me at kjack210@gmail.com

5.) KNOW THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE CALL & THE SEND: We all feel “called” to do or be something in life. That is how God created us. The biggest thing I have learned on this in 2010 is, “Not all open doors are from God!” There have been some really tough decisions made over the past year concerning Mine and Jennifer’s future. There have been opportunities presented that some people have told me I was “crazy” for turning down. I know my calling is in the ministry and for lost people. I also know God has prepared a plan in advance for Jen and I. After prayer and some long conversations with my wife there was just not a peace in my heart about taking any of the opportunities presented. It was tough! I know what God has “Called” me to do, I am now patiently waiting for the “Send” moment where I have peace in my heart. The peace that passes all understanding!

And last but not least: IT IS GREAT TO BE AN AUBURN TIGER! #1 BABY!!!!!!!!!

2010 was an awesome year! I hope you take time to reflect on moments where God has taught you something that only he can!

Merry Christmas!

-Kyle

Stick With It Or Chase Fantasies?

Posted: July 13, 2010 by kylejackson10 in CRAZY LOVE, FCA LEE COUNTY, Uncategorized

Proverbs 12:11 says, “The one who works his land will have plenty of food, but whoever chases fantasies lacks sense.” 

This is something that I have felt strongly to write about for a while now. At 27 years old I have already made a drastic career change from coaching college baseball to sales in construction. I am hoping soon I will have the opportunity to be in full-time ministry. So more than likely I will have made 3 career changes before I am 30 years old.

In 2006 I chased being a college coach. I worked hard! Recruiting, practices, scouting reports, field maintenance, player development…etc.

In September of 2008 through the present I have been chasing $ in the business world doing Sales. I work hard at it! Calling, appointments, quoting, re-pricing, arguing (its construction people)…etc.

But nothing satisfies me as much as the ministry does. Pouring into others and watching life change happen for them.

For 3 years I chased “fantasies” so to speak. Now I know what my “calling” is and I plan on “sticking with it!”

I wanted to write this because I see a trend in my generation, the 30 and younger crowd in the working world. (Sorry if you are over 30…you are not old, just older than most!!) I have friends in different states that I have watched jump from job to job for different reasons. $5,000 raise, better benefits, company car, cool office, etc. My generation chases the fantasy and as a result we have become the expert in nothing and are still looking for the next upgrade. We are not happy at work. Every little thing seems to get us frustrated and we are always on CareerBuilders.Com at work.

My generation wants the nice home, nice car, nice savings account and the best clothes but we want to work 1/2 as hard as the generation before us to get it.

Here are 3 steps to help from the above mentioned verse:

1.) What is your “Land” or What is your Calling? Because until you know that, no fantasy you chase will ever satisfy you enough.

2.) Once you know your calling, work as hard as you can to become the Expert in your field. It is hard to be the expert when you are learning a new trade every 10 months because you got  a $3,000 raise for your new job. Eventually you will become the expert and everyone will call you and you will make more $ than you will by taking small raises for 5 new careers over the next 5 years.

3.) Finally set goals within your calling and have a group that keeps you Accountable for those goals. There is no greater thing for our generation than accountability.

Go chase your calling, “Stick with It” and become the best you can be in whatever field you are in for God!

-Kyle

CHAPTER 7 “CRAZY LOVE”- YOUR BEST LIFE LATER

Posted: August 18, 2009 by kylejackson10 in CRAZY LOVE

“I tell you the truth, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.”  I’ve heard that passage taught on numerous occasions, I’ve left convicted, but haven’t taken it literally. Christians see it as a fresh perspective on poverty, rather than a literal picture of impending judgement. How would my life change if I actually though of each person I came into contact with as Christ – the checker at the grocery store, the lady at the drive thru window, the member of your own family with who you can’t seem to have a conversation with and not get annoyed.

If we really believe that the two greatest commandments are “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul and mind, and “Love your neighbor as yourself” then t his passage has a lot to teach us. Basically, Christ is connecting the command to “Love God” with a command to ” Love your neighbor.” By loving “the least of these,” we are loving God himself. 

God didn’t give a little for us, He gave His best – He gave himself. True love requires sacrifice, and our love is shown by how we live our lives. ” Let us not love with word or tongue, but with actions and truth.” Everyone is familiar with this verse, John 3:16: ” For God so loved the world that he gave.”  Stop right there, and you can see the connection between loving and giving evidently established. 

Giving not motivated by love is worth nothing. Paul says, “From this kind of giving we gain nothing. However, when we give out of love, we gain much.” 

Christians have two distinct choices to make. One – just let life happen, which is tantamount to serving God your leftovers; or two – actively run towards Christ. It is impossible to serve God in any way other than whole-hearted surrender.

Chan asks, “Do you want to see God more than you desire security?  If we allow ourselves to live recklessly for Him, than we too will see His glory . We will see Him do the impossible.”

Chapter 7 says that Christians today play it safe. We have to do things that cost us during our life on earth, but will be more than worth it in eternity.

Ever wondered if the same God that parted the Red Sea for Moses, the God who made the slave Joseph second in power only to Pharaoh,  the same God that rescued Daniel in the lions den, is the same God that we pray to on a daily basis? Can He not perform miraculous things today? Culture has changed, so maybe it’s your career, your marriage, or your financial debt that you need God to answer prayer for. Have you ever really prayed like Moses, Joseph or Daniel? Or have most of your prayers been short and self-centered? 

Chan says, “God wants us to trust Him with abandon; He wants to show us how He works and cares for us. He wants to be our refuge.” Hebrews 11:6 says, “Without faith, it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to Him, must believe that He exists and that He rewards those who earnestly seek Him.”  Walking in genuine intimacy and full surrender to God requires great faith.

We are each given different gifts and talents by our Master. The thing that matters most is how we use what we have been given.

I have been really convicted lately on my everyday life. How many people do I come in contact with every day that are looking for someone to invest in their life? How many people do I have a chance to make their day with a positive comment? How many things am I spending $ on that I do not need when there are people in my own neighborhood that are losing their houses? I have always lived a self-centered life. “What will make Kyle’s life better and easier?” That is a question that is almost always thought of when I am making a decision on finances, time, relationships, etc. I am challenging myself to now ask, “What will benefit someone else today?”

My challenge for you as you read this is to go out of your comfort zone this week and “SERVE SOMEBODY!” Do something that might cost you a little $ or might take an hour of your time.Instead of avoiding the phone call from someone you know needs help doing something, making fun of the homeless man off I75 holding a sign, talking about doing something for someone in need….Answer the phone call, go buy $3 of food off the dollar menu and actually go do something for someone! BE THE HANDS AND FEET OF JESUS!!! “For I tell you the truth, what you do for the least of these you do for me!”

Have a great week!!   -Kyle

 


 

 

Chapter 6 Crazy Love- “When You Are In Love”

Posted: August 5, 2009 by kylejackson10 in CRAZY LOVE

If you could have Heaven, with no sickness, with all the friends you have made while on earth, all the food you enjoy, all the leisure activities you like to do, all the natural beauties you have ever seen, all the physical pleasures you have ever tasted, and no human conflict or disasters, could you be satisfied with Heaven if Christ was not there? If you are deeply in love with Christ then you know you could never be satisfied in Heaven without Him.

When you are truly in love, you go to great lengths to be with the one you love. Who remembers driving for hours just to be together even if it was only for a few hours? Who remembers talking on the phone for hours? Who remembers feeling miserable and painful to be apart from someone you loved? He or she is all you think about and you jump at any chance to be with them. that is how God wants us to be with Him.

You should not want to spend time with someone out of fear or guilt, but instead because of LOVE. Francis Chan says, “When loving him becomes an obligation, one of many things we have to do, we end up focusing even more on ourselves.” 

 My wife and I attend a Mobile Church that meets in a High School. We set up and tear down every Sunday morning. I had someone recently ask my wife and I,”Has the church you attend  asked you to volunteer yet? Trust me they will.” The last time I checked Jesus told us to surrender EVERYTHING for Christ. I think 2-3 hours a week “volunteering” at our church is not that much to ask. But the concept of  “volunteering” is something most churchgoers are not particularly thrilled by.

Francis Chan says, “When you are running toward Christ, you are freed up to serve, love, and give up thanks without guilt, worry or fear. Then you will not have to ask the questions: Am I doing this right or Did I serve enough this week?”

Chapter 6 tells us that when we sacrifice, give and even suffer, we can rejoice because we know that God rewards us.

I challenge you to fill in the blank below. Try your hardest to put God in front of the 2-3 things that come to mind.

Tell God that you have been Lukewarm, that you have chosen _________________ over Him time and time again.

I have been honest with you since starting this blog. My answers were: Sleep and All things technological (TV, Facebook, Internet, Movies, IPOD…etc.) 

-Kyle