Mindy's Blog


A New Leader Needs Some Rhythm 

By Mindy Caliguire - Friday, December 17, 2010

Today's post is from Lindsey Sherrod who serves with CreatePossiblewhere she provides directional leadership, as well as communication and creative consultation for CreatePossible and its clients. She can be found at www.twitter.com/LRsherrod, where she shares about the creative, soul care focused, and often random, life. 

I think I'm learning . . . slowly, painfully . . . at times, there is a place God has called me to, but the journey and direction is Hisnot mine.

My own "soul care" story is actually a bit similar to Mindy's . . . in college, much responsibility . . . much pressure . . . major collapse. The journey back taught mebreath by breathwhat it means to let go of myself and live at the "soul care table" where God and I are both present. 

BUT, the new challenge? I have a somewhat firm grasp (although eroded by my own frailty at times) of my personal soul care rhythm. What about when you're leading a team? Helping othersin a professional contextdevelop their own rhythm? Remind, remind, remind that the emotional/spiritual/relational aspect of a team can either make or break? (And, an unhealthy environment not only breaks the team, but people.)

So, Step #1: Figure out a rhythm that gets my soul care leadership qualities in check, before I even attempt to help others. Words from Nancy Ortberg have been driving my thoughts here, "As a leader, you are responsible for carving out a life that has a rhythm that renews you. It’s not anybody else’s job."

Time for some rhythm carving. Hope you have the chance for some today too.

A Different Kind of Christmas: Guest Post from Soul Gardeners 

By Mindy Caliguire - Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Guest blogger from Soul Gardeners.com is Tom, who loves life and enjoys exploring as much of it as he can. He is sharing life with Lollie, Tayla and Liam as well as friends and family. He is passionate about the kingdom and how it takes expression in South Africa. For original posting, click here.

This Sunday is the beginning of the new year.  That is if you follow the church calendar.  The lectionary readings for the gospels next year will be from the book of Matthew. This past year was from Luke.  This is now the eighth year I will be following the rhythms of the church year. It is a wonderful anti-rhythm to the consumer calendar and as we all know the Christmas season is the ultimate crazy consumer season.

So Sunday marks the start of Advent; the four Sundays before Christmas where we prepare our hearts for the “comings” of Jesus (that is what advent means). A few years ago I stumbled across the Advent Conspiracy site and though it was a great idea to establish a different rhythm.

Who Is Caring for the Next Gen? -- With Tara Rumler 

By Mindy Caliguire - Wednesday, July 14, 2010

What will we call the emerging generation?

If it were up to you, what name or label would you give the new generation of young people?

Recently I read an article on this very topic. Some suggested labels included “Generation Net” or “iGen” because most have grown up online. Another suggested label was “Homelander” because they have grown up with public emergency at home and globally (like September 11 and the ongoing war on terror around the World.) Another idea was around the theme of the “Silent Generation” taken from the Great Depression because of the recent economic downturn.

The potential labels elicited three themes that are marking young people:

  • Internet and Technology
  • Home and Public Emergency
  • Economic Volatility and Uncertainty

How do you think those three themes are marking the souls of young people? Take a minute and respond. Journal or simply write a few words about that question.

Below the article, I noticed a multitude of comments about the new generation.

I estimate 90% of the comments were negative about perceived qualities and other possible harsh labels of the new generation, therefore demonstrating what I see as a major problem:  Every generation looks down on the next, and instead of developing them, they condemn them prematurely. Thus, setting the new generation up to fail in a self-fulfilling prophecy.

So, how can we respond positively to these markings on the new generation?

  • Mentor or share your wisdom in any platform to this new generation. (A mentor can change the trajectory of a young person’s life!)
  • Train them now on how to care for their souls. (Habits begin and form in young people)
  • Encourage others to build into the new generation. (Who do you know that could inspire young people?)

I think we all know deep down that this new generation will not respond to negativity, but will respond to being empowered and believed in. Think back to a time when you were young and someone gave you an opportunity, spoke uplifting words to you, or simply believed in you.  Who was it and what did that person say or do?

The need for encouraging leaders, shepherds, mentors, group leaders, and hope givers to this generation is massive and urgent.  Young people are our hope, our future and current leaders, and our greatest long-term investment. Let's teach them all we know!  Your words, intentionality, and life can make a difference of a lifetime. Take some time to pray or journal a response to this question: How will you make a difference in the lives of the new generation?

(The article referenced, Kids labeled 'generation next' before they grow up,” is via)

Tara RumlerGuest blogger Tara Rumler is Student Ministries Group Life Director at Willow Creek and a freelance writer. She can be found at www.twitter.com/taraumler where she shares about life and her likes - leader development, coffee, reading, coaching, community, finance, and working out. 

Fire and Breathing Space 

By Mindy Caliguire - Tuesday, June 08, 2010

Judy Brown

What makes a fire burn
is space between the logs,
a breathing space.
Too much of a good thing,
too many logs
packed in too tight
can douse the flames
almost as surely
as a pail of water.

So building fires
requires attention
to the spaces in between,
as much as to the wood.

When we are able to build
open spaces
in the same way
we have learned
to pile on logs,
then we come to see how
it is fuel, and the absence of fuel
together, that make fire possible.

We only need to lay a log
lightly from time to time. 
A fire
simply because the space is there,
with openings
in which the flame
that knows just how it wants to burn
can find its way.

San M. Intrator and Megan Scribner, Editors, Teaching with Fire: Poetry that Sustains the Courage to Teach. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 2003, p,89. 

Today my Spiritual Director read me this poem in response to my sharing how I am, for the first time in my life, operating with space—with margin—in my schedule.  I now have time not only to accept a last-minute call for a coaching meeting—as happened yesterday, but also space to Be, reflect, and do some of the creative work that each of us crave to do, but often gets squeezed out by the sheer quantity of the stuff we try to do or the number of people we feel we have to see.  I am still wrestling with the issue of stewardship—What is enough? What is effective stewardship of my life as a faith-supported missionary?, and those issues and questions we all face from time to time.

But I am finding, maybe for the first time in my life, that the issue is not sharing all the wonderful content and ideas which I have collected and gleaned over a lifetime, but finding that proper balance between fuel and space.  I have never thought of the juxtaposition of those two items, but am finding great joy in coaching fewer, and going deeper, and finding that going deeper and burning hotter probably has not happened and will not happen without the necessary space between the logs. 

Isn’t that a great metaphor, and one we all know to be true from our own fire-building experiences?  And the meaning is even deeper in the context of spiritual friendships and formation. 

This may be the image that helps me relinquish my fist-tight hold on content—the ideas, the paradigms, the principles that I for too long have thought were more important than they are. 

I invite you, if and when you ever catch me loading up the fire with way too many logs, to just remind me—“Steve, you only need to lay a log lightly from time to time…”

I am finding that coaching surely operates on this kind of fire, as does mentoring, and the stewarding of relationships in the Body of Christ. 

I just wish I had accepted that truth 30 years ago when I began teaching.

Warming myself by the fire…

Today’s guest blogger is Steve Hoke, a former VP of People Development with Church Resource Ministries who now focuses on leader development and strategic life coaching with mission leaders around the world. He lives with his wife in Ft. Collins, Colorado. He is the co-author with Bill Taylor of Global Mission Handbook: Your Guide to Crosscultural Service (IVPress, 2009). Steve can be contacted at steve.hoke@crmleaders.org.