to continue on from yesterday’s post …
When these things come to me, I must get them down. It is part of the reasons 3-4 posts will come and then none. When I think God is laying something on me, I need to put it in writing to capture it. It is part of my genius.
You see, it is Ok to say “genius”. I believe each of us was born with our own unique, God-gifted genius just waiting to be discovered. But many of you reading this either don’t or won’t believe that about yourself. You’ve been beaten down too long. Too many people have come against you with lies about what you can’t be rather than pouring fuel onto what you could become. I want to pour fuel on your fire and get you moving towards your genius. “I’m too old now”. Wrong. Absolutely wrong. It is yet another lie, another swipe against you from the enemy of resistance.
And let me say this — if you want to be resilient, I think you need to embrace your genius. To embrace your genius means you’ll need a much deeper connection to the Father. Genius = way outside the box. Genius = taking risks others won’t take. Genius = outsized dreams that fly in the face of this enemy we all have of resistance. To do that, you’re going to need to be very resilient. To be very resilient, you’re going to need a lot more of God in your day to day life.
I have always believed I was smart. My grades rarely reflected this. Learning disabilities challenged it. My Mom used to tell me that my IQ test showed I was really bright but she never showed me the test and/or said she had lost it. Either I was off-the-charts bright and she didn’t want that to confuse me — or — I was “below grade” and she didn’t want me to believe the lie. Either way, it doesn’t matter and only recently have I started to move into this mindset of “finding my unique genius”.
Steve Jobs pictured above was clearly a genius that had a vision that he pushed into the reality that is the iPhone. He revolutionized the world. He was a jerk and treated people like disposable cogs in a wheel. That’s not the point. He had a vision, many thought he was crazy (his Board of Directors for one) and he failed a number of times. But he persevered and the phones are attached to us at the hip.
Nick Saban is a genius. Kirby Smart too. Look at what they built. Dabo Swinney clearly had this vision of what Clemson football could become. From top to bottom – the types of kids they wanted, the transformation of them into men beyond the football field, the design of the football operations center. It was all his vision and still is. The man that landscaped my backyard this fall is a genius. He saw things I could not see. He said, “I see it, trust me, it’s gonna look great”. It does. Chris Hodges at Church of the Highlands is a genius. He saw a church no one else saw. He traveled the country talking to other pastors, CEO’s, thought leaders and he “stole” their best material and put it into Highlands. He saw the vision for Highlands College. He saw the vision for ARC (association of related churches) that has raised more than $65 million to plant more than 1,100 churches across America. The friend of mine who just left my office and is about to launch a new business. He’s a genius. The man that teaches 7th graders and has this outside-the-box vision for how he can reach those kids and get them to understand math or science … is a genius. Yesterday, I watched my 5 year-old grandsons’ basketball camp. The lady than ran it … is a genius. She blew her whistle and said “go to your place” and 30 5-year-olds snapped to and ran to their precise spot and sat down. She blew her whistle and said “defense” and I watched my grandsons slap the floor and go to a perfect defensive posture. Amazing. Genius.
Rob & Carrie Strickland at Truth Spring … geniuses. They had this vision for North Highland. Everyone said they were crazy. Many said it could never be done – it was too dangerous, too costly, too risky. But what drove them was love. God implanted them both with this outsized, “Can’t be done” vision. And they’re doing it.
Manufacture Good in Birmingham. This artist, woodworker had this vision. He is a genius. He built furniture. Custom woodshop furniture. Very cool. Created a business from nothing. But that wasn’t it. He turned it into his ministry. Manufacture Good became a refuge for young men – unemployed and at risk – to find meaningful work building things with their hands…
My work is math and numbers and charts and trends. It is people and emotions. Much of it is hunch and intuition. There is the status quo in my business and there are the outside-the-box visionaries. Over the past 18+ months, I’ve decided to be a visionary. I decided to accept and embrace my God-given genius. I saw how the new office could be laid out, the pictures that could go on the walls, the heart pine table that could be our conference table. I’ve seen almost pictures in my mind of decisions that I could make … and I’ve made them. Today, I see the vision coming to fruition.
Is it perfect? No. Am I saying I am smarter than anyone else? No! This has zero to do with any other soul. It is my life and my God-gifting. It may seem weird to others and as Morgan says, that’s OK because “it is only weird if it doesn’t work”. And is this “it” for me? Hardly. This is just a small step in the right direction. The more I stay here and dig into this and converse with the Father, the more excited I get about what all else He has in store for me as yet undiscovered.
Maybe it is a new business you’ve visioned. Maybe you’re an artist but you’ve never pushed through the resistance to take that step. Maybe it is woodworking and building furniture. Maybe it is a garden. Maybe it is going back to school to get your degree. Maybe is asking that girl to marry you because you have this vision of what your family will look like and be about. Maybe … it is your genius.
There is a roaring lion inside of you just waiting to be discovered and unleashed. There is so much you can do and accomplish no matter how old you are. Listen, “that day” is coming quickly for all of us. Will I spend the next ____ years I have left accepting all the lies of my past telling me what I can’t do or who I’ll never become? Will I continue to fall away every time resistance shows its ugly head? Or will I embrace my genius and pursue it?
20 years from now, you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover. Mark Twain
4 Replies to “genius”
“My righteous one will live by faith. And I take no pleasure in the one who shrinks back.
But we do not belong to those who shrink back and are destroyed, but to those who live by faith and are saved. ”
This is the preamble to Hebrews 11, the chapter about all those who have overcome and lived by faith!
Richard, Glad you are writing. If I don’t write the imaginative thoughts when they come I rarely remember them later. We all need to hear what you have been given to say. Robin
Sent from my iPhone
thank you Robin!
thank you Robin