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Part 2: What I’ve Learned About Conviction

07.03.13 | Leadership, Church Plant | by Jobey McGinty

Part 2: What I’ve Learned About Conviction

    It’s been almost six months since we launched Life Mission Church and as our six month anniversary approaches (July 6, 2013), I want to share with you a few things that I have learned as I reflect upon this adventure...

    It’s almost been six months since we launched Life Mission Church. It has been the most exciting and amazing thing that I have ever experienced and been a part of.  It has been the most rewarding and challenging thing I have ever been a part of. And it has been the most faith building thing I have ever been a part of.  I could go on forever just about those things, but as our Six Month Anniversary approaches (July 6), I want to share with you a few things that I have learned as I reflect upon the last six months of this adventure. Read previous post here.

    I can say that I am so far really amazed and excited to be learning how much deeply rooted convictions have to do with decision making and leadership.  When challenges pop up, I can’t imagine how much I would be swaying to the left or to the right without deep convictions. The temptation to do this or that or try this or that, just based on whim and hoping for something that “works” would be far too great, and I wouldn’t be able to steer our church family toward the intended goal.

    Convictions shouldn’t change, at least not all that much, if they are rooted on biblical principles (though our understanding of biblical principles can and will change to some degree as we understand more, but they hopefully won’t dramatically change).  Methods and strategy can change, so long as they are still anchored to the steadfast biblical convictions.  But without those convictions, you become a ship adrift on the open sea.

    This doesn’t mean it’s easy to make decisions.  In some ways, it’s more difficult.  You can change practices and/or convictions, and once you see results, you say, “see, it works!”  But when you stick to conviction, you may not see results, at least not right away, and it becomes easy to abandon ship. This is the true test of where your faith lays.

    Some say, “it works, therefore it’s true.”

    Others say, “it is truth, therefore it will work.”

    Conviction and that deeply rooted theology has become the solid rock on which I must stand. I think that I have come to love it so much because, to be honest, I don’t have much else. In baseball, there are some rare and special players that they call “Five Tool Players,” because they have the five varying features that you look for in a player. But it’s rare that a player has all five (for instance, guys that hit for power (one of the tools) are usually massive dudes, which means they don’t run fast (which is another tool)).

    And me, well, let’s just say I don’t have the five tools (however, many would agree that I am a tool).  The glaring reality for me is that I most definitely am not a Five Tool Pastor.  But as I said in the last post, it’s been so much in my weaknesses and lack of toolage that I’ve seen God move the most.  And He moves the most when I sit back and make decisions based on the convictions I have that are based on His Word, as I’m forced to walk by faith, and not by sight.

    Where I lack charisma, I depend on conviction. Where I lack a clear direction, I depend on conviction. When I have to make a judgment call, I depend on conviction. When things aren’t going the way I would like them to go, I depend on conviction. And when things are going better than I expected them to go, I depend on conviction.

    For me, I don’t hold my convictions tightly, but rather my convictions hold me tightly. My convictions aren’t based on the best of two or three options, but they are the only option. My convictions captivate me and act as my guardian.

    The shoe shouldn’t tell the foot how big it should be.  Don’t let circumstances, pragmatism, human logic and wisdom, or “what seems best” be the decision makers in your life.  Explore and develop your convictions based solely on God’s Word and a healthy understanding of who He is and what He has done.

    Do you make decisions “off the cuff” or impulsively?
    Do you have a need for constant change, and change that sometimes is vastly different than what you were doing before?
    Are you always pursuing “what works” in your life, rather than “what is true”?
    What are some of your most tightly held convictions, and when were some times when you swayed from them?