I realize many of you have no real interest in Professional Baseball in America. Pity. It’s a great game.
For those of you who know me, it is also no secret who my favorite team is; The Dodgers. I am in mourning as my team was eliminated from the playoffs on Friday night. It still stings.
But, regardless of your sports preference, or even if you wish that sports would just go away, this picture goes way beyond sports, into something so much more.
Spend a few minutes and take a good look.
This picture above was taken when my Dodgers clinched the first round of the playoffs. As you look at both these men, it obvious that this is an important moment in both of their lives; two generations meeting, coming together and acknowledging the exchange of the mantle.
Both men are/were really good in what they do/did (pitchers). Yet both are exchanging an acknowledgement of one another’s role and importance. Together, they represent what’s best about the passing of the torch.
As one generation looks into the eyes of the future generation, something gets exchanged. Things like: belief, trust, celebration and faith. Things that cannot be bought or even measured, but highly valuable nonetheless.
As the TV commercial might say;
Congratulations from crowds: NICE. Approval from those you have looked up to: PRICELESS.
Sandy Koufax (my childhood hero) congratulates and honors Clayton Kershaw (my son’s generation star). And by his look, Clayton (the young new star) acknowledges that the approval from the one who has gone before (Sandy) means more than all the others.
Boomers, its time. In fact for many, its past time.
Its time to spot and identify those whom God has gifted… who are doing it good… and even doing it better than you… and start telling them so… blessing their giftedness… sponsoring them into greater influence, and then stepping aside.
Most of us who are part of the “biggest” boom of babies in history are now at the point where the “doing” of ministry is not the point. It’s time for us to be more about sponsoring others in to do the ministry, and not focusing on taking another run at it ourselves.
And if we continue in the “limelight,” its really in order to “shine-the-Light” on others; those waiting for their chance to make a difference. What that this looks like for each of us BOOMERS will look different.
But, here are a few TIPS related to what NOT to do, as we seek to sponsor and invest in others:
- The emerging and “on-the-bubble” leaders don’t want to hear everything you know; they want to know who you are, and about your life and values. They are looking for a relationship way before resourcing.
- The “I don’t think they are ready” syndrome needs perspective. I am sure glad those who gave me a chance did not “wait” until I was ready. What got me ready, was being given a chance. They “believed in me” to the point of sponsoring me into position. Thanks Dave, Bob, Bobby and the many others.
- Those we sponsor don’t need mentoring. They need coaching with periodic mentoring. Coaching pulls it out, mentoring puts it in. Invest first into drawing out what’s God is at work doing already before you deposit what God did and how he worked when you did ministry.
C’mon Boomers! Its time!
Its time to say (and put into action) the FOUR most important words that anyone can hear, especially up-and-coming leaders all around you; “I believe in You!”
© Terry Walling 2013