House of Leadership Vision
Do you have a blueprint for success? In your business, family, or non-profit institution, do you have building plans to positively influence your target audience? Tucked away in the Bible’s Thirty Sayings of the Wise is God’s secret blueprint for any organization or movement to successfully lead its culture. I call it, The House of Leadership.
The footer is humility.
We must first dig down before God lays our foundation. Solomon taught, “When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with humility comes wisdom” (Prov. 11:2). Whereas, pride is a hard heart, humility is a soft heart—bending the knees of our hearts first toward God and then toward others. Solomon’s theme of Proverbs states, “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom” (Prov. 9:10). The fear of the LORD is humility toward God, our first step in the House of Leadership. This is the starting point for building a satisfied life: “Humility and the fear of the LORD bring wealth and honor and life” (Prov. 22:4). Solomon declared God’s role in the construction of any successful movement as a nonnegotiable: “Unless the LORD builds the house, its builders labor in vain” (Psalm 127:1). When my heart softened from pride to humility toward God and others, I was in a position for God to lay the foundation of wisdom in my life.
The foundation is wisdom.
Next, He lays our foundation. Too often, our foundation is foolishness. Solomon communicated, “By wisdom a house is built” (Prov. 24:3a). House, bayith in Hebrew, refers to any organization or movement. The foundation is where the vertical intersects with the horizontal—the definition of wisdom: God’s heart (vertical) intersecting with street smarts (horizontal). Wisdom helps us apply our vertical relationship with God to our horizontal circumstances. The Jews’ ultimate name for God was Wisdom. The apostle Paul defined the wisdom of God not as a principle, but as a person—Christ (1 Cor. 1:24). He went on to define Christ as the only foundation (1 Cor. 3:11). This was not a new idea. Proverbs, the book of wisdom, described the pre-incarnate Christ as the wisdom of God (Prov. 8:22-31). When I exchanged money for wisdom as the foundation of my life, God began to transform the rubble of my foolish failures into success.
The framework is understanding.
After digging our footer and laying our foundation, He builds our framework. Solomon continued, “And through understanding it is established” (Prov. 24:3b). Understanding is insight that occurs through the Holy Spirit (Prov. 9:10). Established means “to build up.” In order to build upon our foundation of wisdom, we must be equipped with the framework to see inside others. Understanding sees inside a person’s heart where we would like to build a bridge. Understanding moved me from interpersonal conflict, laden with misunderstandings, to insight into others.
The furnishings are knowledge.
Once our house is built, it is time to furnish it. Solomon concluded, “Through knowledge its rooms are filled with rare and beautiful treasures” (Prov. 24:4). Knowledge is the connection of the innermost part of two or more persons through the Spirit of God. Consequently, knowledge is not merely information; rather it is intimacy, an experiential connection with others. In essence knowledge is a bridge we can cross to connect with the heart of another. Therefore, The House of Leadership is primarily about developing wise relationships. I made my living by auctioning rare and beautiful treasures; however, I learned that the only treasures on earth that will last for eternity are relationships.
The House of Leadership is God’s blueprint for success. This was His design when He created the earth: “By wisdom the LORD laid the earth’s foundations, by understanding he set the heavens in place; by his knowledge the deeps were divided, and the clouds let drop the dew” (Prov. 3:19-20). God’s design restored my marketplace and ministry life. I hope The House of Leadership will do the same for you.
The Restoration Road Movement
The cross, a symbol of the most horrific death created by mankind, is also a picture of the vertical intersecting with the horizontal. The vertical represents our relationship with God. The horizontal portrays our relationships with others, including the tasks that we desire to achieve. Jesus Christ who lived, died on a cross, and resurrected to provide us with His Spirit, is the embodiment of the vertical and the horizontal: fully God and fully man, restoring man with God and man with man.
Each person is created in the image of God with one primary purpose: to live where the vertical intersects with the horizontal. No wonder the postmodern culture’s number one value is authenticity: reflecting the design of the Designer from the inside out. Authenticity begins in our hearts, beats through our desires, and breathes through our lives.
Our Culture’s Problem: Pretense from Pride’s Prison – separating the Vertical and the Horizontal
Pretense, the opposite of authenticity, misaligns our lives from the outside in. Pretense focuses on the outside at the expense of the inside. We pretend that we are the ultimate designers in our lives. Consequently, we pretend that we do not need restoration. We pretend with God. We pretend with others. The result is a life trapped in continual, progressive pretense that leaves us dissatisfied.
Pride is the lock on the human heart. Humility is the key. Pride is a hard heart. It comes in two forms: stone or sand. A stone heart is legalistic. It pretends to connect with the vertical at the expense of the horizontal. It requires a severe tool to be shaped. A sand heart is loose. It pretends to connect with the horizontal at the expense of the vertical. It needs a storm in order to be shaped. Both stone and sand hearts separate the vertical from the horizontal, resulting in four walls that surround us, forming a prison. This imprisonment is the incarceration of pride that creates our need for restoration of the vertical with the horizontal.
We attempt to free ourselves from pride’s prison of pretense through self-restoration. Either we attempt to become more religious in our stone heartedness as we turn off the relationships around us, or we find ourselves loose in our convictions as we ignore God. Both fall short. In the end, we learn that stone and sand are the same substance, just a different aggregate. In essence, sand is stone that is broken into tiny pieces. Both are in need of restoration by Another.
The Solution (Our Mission): Restoring the Vertical with the Horizontal
A clay heart is a humble heart, one that is malleable in the hands of the Designer, the One Who longs to restore our stone and sand hearts to clay. Whereas a stone heart is legalistic, and a sand heart is licentious, a clay heart is loving. When Jesus was asked to bottom line His message, he crafted it succinctly: “Love God with all your heart. Love others as yourself. This is what connects people with God” (Matt. 22:37-40). Jesus’ answer was a picture of restoring the vertical with the horizontal through love. His choice for the word love arose from many options. He chose agape, a self-sacrificial love that humbly serves others. The Master Key that unlocks restoration in our lives is cross-shaped: humility vertically toward God and horizontally toward others. The Master Key frees us for restoration to authenticity.
- Restore You As A Priest
We believe that each person is created to be a minister of restoration, one who lives where the vertical intersects with the horizontal. The Bible calls this person a priest. God designed us to be restored with Him and restored with each other, so that we would be used by Him to restore others to authenticity. Priests marry, bury, baptize, counsel, teach, and administer communion. They also conduct surgeries, invest in the markets, buy and sell businesses, practice law, broker real estate, and swing hammers. Consequently, we equip our priests with our relevant website that features our television broadcasts as well as devotionals, Power Point, and group questions for you to share with others throughout the week. We can even make sermon notes available by Bluetooth to your PDA.
- Discover Your Unique Ministry
We believe that each person is unique. Therefore, his or her ministry of restoration is unique. Rather than tell you what your ministry should be, we ask and listen in order to help you discover the unique expression of Christ in you. We want to learn from you. We want to learn about your life in an attempt to help you release the Restorer’s work in you as you go throughout your week. We refuse to major in minors, communicating religion over relationship.
- See Every Encounter As A Three-Way Call
We believe that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, or the Spirit of Christ (1 Corinthians 6:19). God does not dwell merely in a tent, or in a stone temple; rather, God dwells in those of us who fully surrender our hearts, desires, and lives to Him. This makes every encounter a three-way call. Connection Number One is our vertical connection with God. This occurs when we ask God to be Lord and Savior of our lives. This means that anyone we lock eyes with represents our audience for ministry. Connection Number Two is our horizontal connection with others. This includes those who already fit in our agenda as well as our agenda adjusters. We connect when we ask others about their lives. Connection Number Three is others’ connections with God. This takes place when they ask God to restore their lives. Seeing every encounter as a three-way call makes our lives 24/7 worship.
- Connect Your Culture With Christ
We believe that the ministry of restoration occurs inside and outside four walls. Rather than capture and control membership, we equip and release people to connect the culture with Christ. We do not have formal membership; rather, we have priests. These priests connect their culture with Christ, the only One who can truly restore.
- Multiply God Throughout Your Life
We believe that when the vertical intersects with the horizontal, the three resources of life: time, talent, and treasure are used to primarily advance Christ’s kingdom of the heart in others. That’s why our staff is small. Our budgets are designed to help you minister where you already work and play. Rather than take your time, talent, and treasure by adding God on to your life, we want to help free your time, talent, and treasure by multiplying God throughout your life. Rather than add ministry on to your calendar, we desire to help you minister throughout your already busy schedule. Rather than add ministry on to your talent, we would like to assist you as you minister within your talent whether you are a mom, a dad, a butcher, a baker, or a candlestick maker. Rather than take your treasure by adding donations to a non-profit corporation on your tax return, we want to come along side you with God’s wisdom to help you earn and even give more.
- Equip and Release You To Give Where You Already Are
We believe that if we collect an offering it should be used to support the ministry of restoration performed by priests. That’s why we are debt free. Rather than spend 85 percent of our budget on a building and staff, we want to invest our budget to directly restore our culture. We help feed the hungry, clothe the naked, shelter the homeless, comfort the sick and dying, and educate the marginalized. We buy Valentine’s Day gifts for strippers, build houses for widows, buy vehicles for single moms, payoff mortgages for recovering drug addicts, scholarship students who live in a city dump in Manila, and offer friendship to the forgotten because that’s what priests do.
- Reclaim And Restore Your Relationships
We believe that God’s ultimate small group is family: not only biological or adopted, but the family of God. So, we want to help you first minister to your spouses and children. We believe that your marketplace relationships are: unique, natural, and seasonal. We know that you already have relationships; so rather than rip you from them, we help you restore your existing connections to authenticity. Consequently, we don’t have a small group program that manufactures relationships and then asks you to leave them a year later in order to microwave new ones. Instead, we encourage you to meet weekly with one or two other priests of the same gender who can help you to continually be CLAY: confess shortcomings, learn the Bible, apply what you learn to your calendar, and yield the outcomes to God through prayer. We will help connect you with other priests whose ministries will synergize with yours.
- Restore Others Who Restore Others
We believe that what God restores you from equips you to be used by Him to restore others. When those whom God has used you to restore are actually used by Him to restore others, then we see the kingdom of God at work through multiplication.
- Communicate Your Story
We believe that each of us has a story of restoration that needs to be shared. That’s why we tell personal stories of our priests being restored and using their new lives to lead others toward restoration. Consequently, we have developed an archive of stories chronicled on film available at our website and on DVD’s. These powerful stories are entitled, Restoration Road.
- Invite Others to Our Gatherings
We believe that ministry takes place 168 hours a week. We believe that God is not regulated to a particular style of worship, at a certain hour, on a selected day, in a chosen building. At the same time, we believe in the power of a gathering on Sunday morning, the day of the week that the first disciples chose to meet together in order to celebrate the resurrection of Christ and therefore, the restoration of all things. This is the same day that our culture sets aside to investigate God. We have made our gatherings (streamed live on the internet) engaging and authentic as we invite both restored and unrestored alike to be inspired to live in the sweet spot where the vertical intersects with the horizontal. When we gather, it is the biggest come as you are party of the week. We rock, we roll, we restore. As the people of God, we delve into the Word of God and dive into the Spirit of God in order to leave transformed to release the mission of God 168 hours a week.
Life eternal and life abundant restored vertically with God and restored horizontally with others when we bend the knees of our hearts
A clear vision for life that connects the vertical (ministry) with the horizontal (marketplace)
A peaceful life that comes from listening vertically in prayer and obedience to God and listens horizontally in intimacy with others
A confident life of repentance and faith that leans vertically on God, trusting in Him, and leans horizontally into others
A wise life that learns God’s heart vertically and connects it with street smarts horizontally
An influencing life that follows God vertically and impacts others horizontally, evangelizing in order to make disciples (1 Corinthians 11:1)
A sacrificial life that serves God vertically in communion and serves others horizontally in community
- Letting Go
A free life that is forgiven by God vertically and forgives others horizontally
- To Restore our Vertical Connection with God
CLAY: Confess, Learn, Apply, Yield
Learn wisdom from the Bible
Apply wisdom to our calendars
Yield the outcomes to God
- To Restore our Horizontal Connection with Others
SALT: Serve, Ask, Listen, Touch
Serving initiates a relationship
Asking intrigues a relationship
Listening gives integrity to a relationship
Touching our lives with others provides intimacy to a relationship
- To Restore Others’ Vertical Connections with God
LIGHT: Link, Illuminate, Guide, Help, Tie it all together
Link others to loving community
Illuminate God’s story in others
Guide others to their unrestored heart conditions
Help others fully surrender their hearts and lives to the Restorer in order to receive forgiveness and restoration
Tie it all together: those restored to authenticity become CLAY, SALT, and LIGHT