Well, it’s been nearly six weeks of blogging and somehow I’ve managed to not mention the Detroit Red Wings. Of course this blog is about faith at work, but those of you who know me know that I’m obsessed with hockey. I thank the Lord regularly for the joy that I experience watching the Red Wings (you think I’m kidding… I’m not).
My all-time favorite player is Steve Yzerman. One of the reasons that he’s my favorite is that after ten years of being one of the greatest offensive scorers in the league he decided to become one of its best defensive forwards. Why? Because despite the fact that his own scoring stats would suffer, he felt that’s what the Wings needed to win the Stanley Cup. The next year in 1997 they did, forty-two years after they’d last won it. And under his leadership, they did again in 1998 and 2002.
Now from Steve to Max – Max DePree. He’s one of my favorite Christian businessmen and authors and while I’ve never met him, I have great respect for him. One of my favorite quotes by him is, “We cannot become what we need to be by remaining what we are.” I’m guessing Stevie Y would agree.
As the weather has warmed and spring has sprung, my attention has turned the overgrown shrubs by our back fence that need pruning. That’s where John comes in, specifically the agricultural analogy that Jesus uses in John 15, 1-2:
I am the true grapevine, and my Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch of mine that doesn’t produce fruit, and he prunes the branches that do bear fruit so they will produce even more.”
I’m wondering what part of who I am needs to be left behind. Are my opinions crowding out those of my coworkers? Is my own ambition impeding the progress of our team? Or how about the really big challenge – what part of who I am needs to be pruned back so that I can reflect the grace that Jesus offers in my daily behavior?
That goal is my own, spiritual Stanley Cup.