Improving Someone’s Life: Passion for Service Pt. 6

ID-10058409

Image courtesy of Sommai at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

During the months of January and February, I’m teaching a workshop at my church about finding God’s Will as you serve Him. This blog provides brief summaries of the previous classes in order to help people stay up to date if they can’t attend or have missed a session.

 

 

 

Previous Posts In the Series:

Some of the handouts are available on their respective posts. If you can’t locate the appropriate handout, feel free to request them from me here.

Sometimes Someone Else Says It Best

As I prepared for this week’s post, I ran across this post. Since we’re focusing on discovering our personal missions for service, I thought this might be of interest to someone reading this blog. There are many ways we can serve as the author of the post below explains. It’s a bit long but well worth the read especially in light of recent events.

Am I Invisible? The Pain-Relieving Response to Being Rejected or Excluded

Advertisements

Influence and Relationships: Finding Your Passion for Service Pt. 5

Image courtesy of Sommai at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

 

 

During the months of January and February, I’m teaching a workshop at my church about finding God’s Will as you serve Him. This blog provides brief summaries of the previous classes in order to help people stay up to date if they can’t attend or have missed a session.

Previous Posts In the Series:

Some of the handouts are available on their respective posts. If you can’t locate the appropriate handout, feel free to request them from me here.

This past week, we focused more on How we serve in relation to our own personal interaction style.

How You Influence

People tend to fall into two categories when influencing people: directive or informative. If you’re directive, then you will note something needs to be done and ask someone to do it. If you’re informative, you will point out the situation but not point-blank ask them to take care of if. For example, your car is low on gas. If you’re directive, you might say, “Will you fill up the tank while you’re out?”  If you’re informative, you might say, “The car is low on gas.”

This might seem like a small difference, but it isn’t. I’ve seen situations where I’ve made a statement to a person who tends to be informative, and they will assume I’ve asked them to do something. That is not the case. I’m directive, so if I want you to do something, I’ll be straight to the point.

How You Define Relationships

The other dimension of style is how we define relationships: initiating or responding. If you tend to initiate, you focus on what’s around you. Initiators tend to greet and interact with people. If you’re responsive, you tend to focus more on what’s going on inside you. Responders tend to move at a slower pace and observe more.

The Four Interaction Styles

When you combine these dimensions, you get the four interaction styles developed by Linda Berens, Ph.D.

  • Chart the Course:  Directing-Responding
  • Behind the Scenes:  Informing-Responding
  • Get Things Going: Informing-Initiating
  • In Charge: Directing-Initiating

These styles have their own particular characteristics. For example, their approach to a goal:

  • Chart the Course likes to make deliberate, thought-out decisions that lead to the result desired.
  • Behind the Scenes likes to consult others in their data-gathering process in order to make the best possible result.
  • Get Things Going likes to seek collaboration in their decision-making so the result is one everyone can stand behind.
  • In Charge likes to move quickly in decision-making, so they can see an achievable result in a short period of time.

This is a brief overview, and not enough to help you identify and understand how interaction styles affect your own behavior. For instance, you fall into one of these styles, but they are situational. You tend to use your preferred style, but under certain circumstances, will shift to a different style. I shared more about this in the workshop. If you missed this session and want to catch up, feel free to contact me using the link listed earlier in this post.

More information can, also, be found on Linda Berens website.

Interaction Styles and Service

How does this affect your journey while identifying how you want to serve in your Christian walk? The more aware you are of your styles and behaviors, the easier it will be for you to identify an area that fits you. God gave us gifts, and our personalities are part of the equation. For example, I’m an In Charge. I prefer to lead or at least help lead. If I’m not leading, I have to work hard to keep my opinion to myself when I don’t agree with how someone is handling the job. This doesn’t mean I can’t follow, but I might want to consider this when I’m trying to find my niche for serving God.

Are you working on your Mission Statement and collecting items for your Vision Board? Moving forward, we will focus primarily on building our vision boards.

 

 

Why We Serve: Finding Your Passion for Service, Pt. 4

Image courtesty of Stuart Miles, freedigitalphotos.net

During the months of January and February, I’m teaching a workshop at my church about finding your service passion. After we spend a few sessions defining our service passion, we will be creating vision boards to help us focus our efforts on the right areas to support our service.  This blog will provide brief summaries of the previous classes in order to help people stay up to date if they can’t attend or have missed a session.

Previous Posts In the Series:

Last week, we looked at how and who we will serve. If you didn’t get the How or Who handouts, contact me here, and I’ll email them to you.

The Spirit’s Prompting

Why do you want to serve? We know we’re called to serve as Christians, but we need to know our own personal why. What draws us to a special area? If you’re like me, it’s easy to feel pulled to serve in more areas than I can handle. If this is you, either you say yes to everything or you hesitate in your decision-making and never choose. Neither choice is good. God wants us to serve.

Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms. I Peter 4:10

Part of the goal of this series is to help you find a focus, so you’ll know when to say yes and when to say no. If you’ve followed the posts, so far, we’ve been exploring how the Spirit can lead you to this answer. As we looked at the words list for How and for Who last week, we needed to be open to circling any words that spoke to us–EVEN IF WE DIDN’T KNOW WHY. That’s important.

Now, we want to look at another list to discover WHY we serve.

The Why

Our reason for serving comes from our personal values. After identifying your values, we can look at how the How, Who, and Why combine into a mission statement for our service.

 

Below is a list of typical values. Don’t think too hard about it, just choose your top three to five. There are several that are similar, so you might want to read through the entire list before making your selections.

 

Your Service Mission Statement

Now that you have your values identified, you can begin to put together your mission statement.

 

Further Definition

Another tool that can help you identify how to proceed is to evaluate the following areas of your life.  Score each area from 1-10 with 1 indicating it’s non-existent in your current situation and 10 indicating you are extremely happy in that area. Then look at the areas with the lower scores. Can you use the How, Who, and Why to build up one of your weaker areas?

  • Social
  • Intellectual
  • Emotional
  • Physical
  • Spiritual
  • Career
  • Relationship
  • Friends
  • Money
  • Security
  • Other

What Do You Do Now?

Still not sure about your focus? That’s ok. Take some time and pray about it.

Also, be on the look out for images that speak to you, whether in magazines, on the internet, or around you. Take a picture of the image or pull it from the magazine or internet and hang on to it. You don’t have to know why the image speaks to you, just that it does. This is the beginning of your Vision Board.

Have you developed a Mission Statement or narrowed down your How, Why, or Who? Please share in the Comments on this post. I can’t wait to see what everyone is discovering!