Monday, November 30, 2015

Skin in the Game

I might be one of the few people in Canada who was able to watch the Cabinet Swearing In Ceremony and call it work!  The 'changing of the guard' brought with it new faces, fresh ideas and for many Canadians the sense of a a new day in Canadian politics.  My attention was captured when I heard the commentator make reference to the Hon. Jane Philpot's involvement in her local church as both a board member and 'song-leader' and I was reminded, AGAIN... that God always has 'skin in the game'.

Technically, to have 'skin in the game' means to have a money in an investment.  In this instance, I take the expression more literally, in that God always has people strategically placed within the our culture and society.  Consider that of all of the people who ran for office, that the Hon. Judy Philpott, a devout follower of Jesus would not only win her nomination, but also her seat and then be given the very significant and strategic position of Minister of Health for all of Canada.

In 8 years of serving leaders, I've come to the conclusion that despite what we may think, expect and inevitably conclude from an uninformed distance, God always has 'skin in the game'.

I recently spent 3 days at Queens Park in Toronto.  A few days before I arrived, I was encouraged to make contact with a particular member who I was told would be quite helpful to me as I sought to establish our work there.  When given the information, I made some quick and broad assumptions about how this person might receive me.  I was proven wrong in our initial phone call and even more wrong when we met face to face.  During our conversation, the member said, 'We need to make this a spiritual place!'  Once again, I discovered that God had 'skin in the game' in an important and significant spot and needed to repent and recalibrate my thinking and perspective.

At this time of year, we remember the most incredible 'skin in the game' event in history when according to John's gospel, 'the WORD became flesh and dwelled among us.'   Jesus took on humanity and in every way became God's most significant investment.  Nothing says 'I'm committed' more than God becoming flesh!  He came to model, to teach, to live, to die, rise again  and most importantly make a way for us to find forgiveness and eternal life.  You would think that would be then end of  God having 'skin in the game', but God always has 'skin in the game'.

The Bible is filled with the accounts of ordinary men and women who served as 'skin in the game' so that God's purposes and plans could be fulfilled through their lives.  From every walk of life, God called them, empowered them and used them in strategic ways to impact the lives of countless others. He still does!

Being 'skin in the game' isn't so much about knowing all the answers or even understanding all the questions.  It's more about saying yes to God and going with His plans and purposes.  The biggest part of being 'skin in the game' is just showing up, watching and listening and then letting God do the rest through you.  

Have a great Christmas!

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