When my muscles get tired from playing soccer I can almost hear them telling me to STOP working out so hard! But, it’s then that I am probably getting stronger. When my fingers are stretching too far to reach the c#add-9 chord, I can almost hear them telling me STOP reaching so far. But, as a growing guitarist, I need to stretch and go directions that are out of my reach to get to a better place. When I feel like I want to tell myself to STOP reading it is probably then that I am going to be learning the most.
Shane Parrish’s work The Great Mental Models: General Thinking Concepts presents to me such a construct: reaching into new directions that others taught me to go to reach new heights in my pursuits for different life rhythms. These three frames are life-giving demands the adding disciplines that I didn’t conjure up on my own.
Mr. Parrish probably learned more deeply that learning from others gave him a greater purview of opportunities to succeed. It’s like seeing new visions through a kaleidoscope. Parrish wrote, “the person with the fewest blind spots wins. Removing blind spots means we see, interact with, and move closer to understanding reality.” We need others to succeed.
My research is aimed to support the bi-vocational pastor. That vocational calling means that this pastor will need to partner with other persons or agencies because no one person or agency contains every aspect to reach different levels of success. From my experience, the challenge for young leaders (not necessarily by age) and entrepreneurs will be less likely to listen and receive from others until they hit the wall so to speak.
We all have deficits and we ought to be glad about that fact. I know that’s odd to say. However, if we are to be part of the solution for the sake of others it is wise to consider what our part or parts might be and what others can bring.
In my vocational world, if the pastor is to seek the welfare of their neighborhood then a kaleidoscope or network of skill sets will have to be part of the strategy because ministry is not that simple anymore. For example, The Wall Street Journal notes that “RURAL AMERICA IS THE NEW ‘INNER CITY.’ A Wall Street Journal analysis shows that since the 1990s, sparsely populated counties have replaced large cities as America’s most troubled areas by key measures of socioeconomic well-being—a decline that’s accelerating.” This is where the village and urban pastor collide to create a more meaningful and successful ministry experience.
By the way, I probably think better in Parrish’s first principles, thought experiment, inversion, and need to grow in the Hanlon’s Razor categories.
 Janet Adamy and Paul Overberg, “Rural America Is the New ‘Inner City,’” The Wall Street Journal, May 26, 2017, https://www.wsj.com/articles/rural-america-is-the-new-inner-city-1495817008, (accessed November 7, 2019).