February is upon us which means love is in the air! Many blogs and articles will probably focus on the love aspect this month but I want to go after something different while it is intimately connected with love it is a key to loving others and most importantly yourself in a healthier way. What I am talking about of course is the topic of mastering the small things or in other words being a faithful steward of the little you have been given in order to graduate towards the more.
Every professional, artist, athlete, entrepreneur, businessman or businesswoman knows that obtaining the key to success largely depends on how dependable they are on mastering the basics. The greatest teachers and influencers of yesterday and today shared something extraordinary in common. Forever linked across wisdom’s timeline they attended the same school called “Framework University”, submitted themselves to similar tests, persevered through persecution, dedicated themselves to the long and arduous journey called process rather than shortcutting and yielding to trivial temptations that could have so easily diverted their commitments.
One of the greatest fighters of all time Muhammad Ali spoke on the importance of framework’s training.
“I hated every minute of training but I said; Don’t quit. Suffer now and live the rest of your life as a champion.”
Growing up whether you went to Sunday school or not most of us know the story of Moses and if you’ve seen the famous old movie “The Ten Commandments” with Charlton Heston or the cartoon film “The Prince of Egypt” you will know who I am talking about. In the incredible true story of the Israelites found in Exodus Moses successfully through partnering with their Spirit guide called (Yahweh) leads a mass exodus out of Egypt towards the land of their forefathers, the Promised Land. Now the Hebrews are in the wilderness and after being disobedient to the clear commands of their Creator and 40 years of wandering in the desert they are now back on the brink of the Promised Land once more. But the baton of leadership is being passed onwards to the next generation to a man called Joshua. With this context in mind I want to highlight a portion of the story that comes next to support our discussion today on “Mastering the Mini.”
Joshua 1: 1-7
“After the death of Moses the servant of the Lord, the Lord said to Joshua son of Nun, Moses’ aide: Moses my servant is dead. Now then, you and all these people, get ready to cross the Jordan River into the land I am about to give to them—to the Israelites. I will give you every place where you set your foot, as I promised Moses…No one will be able to stand against you all the days of your life. As I was with Moses, so I will be with you; I will never leave you nor forsake you. Be strong and courageous, because you will lead these people to inherit the land I swore to their ancestors to give them.
Be strong and very courageous. Be careful to obey all the law my servant Moses gave you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, that you may be successful wherever you go.”
Folks the essence of true leadership, and becoming an influencer is found in starting off at rock bottom being influenced by somebody else. You can see in this passage that servant and aide are mentioned multiple times. Joshua learned that good things come to those who wait, who are committed to the process of training taking it one step at a time. Take a child for example. First they are born dependant upon the mother for food, then they begin to crawl, finally they walk, eventually they are able to eat without assistance and before long some years down the road they become self capable of creating their own environment that will sustain and enable them to grow strong and healthy. So it should be with us…let us take this journey one step at a time and not abort the process. Half of the adventure of life is to go with the flow and enjoy every moment.
Engaging Pure Rhythm & Energy
In my own life I am pursuing dance and one of the genres of dance I have jumped into is break dancing which I began back in September of 2012. Last month a professional and world renown bboy named Bboy Puzzles Supernatural Z came and taught a group workshop on bboying in my hometown here in Kelowna, BC. When I went into the workshop I thought he was going to teach us crazy advanced level moves, and crazy flips…however I was surprised to see that he started off with the foundations of bboying. Puzzles gave a short discourse on the history of bboying followed by what he taught as “The 3 F’s of Bboying” that are essential to being a bboy.
Our instructor explained in order to make an impact through our breakdancing in the days ahead we need to know our history and where we have come from. These three f’s all are all pillars in the foundation of bboying. These f’s are all dependant upon one another. Puzzles said if you aren’t having fun or if you don’t have funk (rhythm) or don’t have the foundational footwork you aren’t a bboyer. I use this illustration to point at our lives. If we aren’t having fun in where we are currently at, if we are unable to catch the rhythm of our potential or we refuse to slow down and master the foundations we won’t be successful in what we are doing or where we are going!
Joshua the character I mentioned in the account of Israel earlier understood this principle extremely well! Let us take a look inside the biblical account of Exodus to find out why Joshua had success.
The LORD would speak to Moses face to face, as a man speaks with his friend. Then Moses would return to the camp, but his young aide Joshua son of Nun did not leave the tent.
Whatever spirituality looks like to you, wherever your anchor is that you draw strength from whatever the case linger in that energy, reach for that which is beyond your own strength, stay in the game…set up camp in the field of dreams where nothing is impossible for you. My friend and very talented bboy dancer Francisco Ugarte told me once when I was first beginning bboying to “stay in school” when all I wanted to do was step outside the dance circle because I felt like the moves I were attempting to hit looked so bad. But I made myself submit and serve the step-by-step process and now I am beginning to grow more and more slowly but surely. Like Joshua I stayed in the tent…connected with the core of my being, drew strength from that which is beyond me (my Spirit guide) and I continue to excel and advance as I stay in the school of life even after class and the minimum expectations of me are done.
Ultimately all of us have been put on this earth for a purpose, we have been designed for something and as this quote so eloquently puts it:
“Man is asked to make of himself what he is supposed to become to fulfill his destiny.” Paul Tillich
Framework…is the first place architects, builders, singers, dance choreographers, athletes, business executives go before they create large buildings, masterpieces, showcase events, show their capabilities or present their plans. Take your time even if you feel like you aren’t reaching the advanced levels yet…do the simple things like an expert and you will be propelled much quicker into becoming one! This is what it looks like to “Master the Mini”.
“The fight is won or lost far away from the witnesses, behind the lines, in the gym, and out there on the road; long before I dance under those lights.”
– Muhammad Ali
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