Have you ever wondered what Christmas is like when you’re close with God, successful in business and thriving in your marriage and family - all at the same time?
It used to be I could hit one out of three of those at a time. On a good day, I might get two.
As a Christian life and business coach, I’ve found that most men usually struggle in one or more corners of this triangle.
The secret I discovered is that if you allow any of them to deteriorate beyond a certain degree, the other two will suffer.
This might seem like “common sense.” But here’s the irony - men continue to this day to wrestle with all three categories. Common sense is … not so common.
My friend Rabbi Daniel Lapin made a great point about faith, business and marriage.
All three of these come with no guarantees. There are promises, but no guarantees.
You can do operating agreements and prenuptials if you want to, but you have no guarantee business partners or spouses won’t lose interest or heart and abandon you.
God will never cut you loose, but I’ve noticed He also doesn’t guarantee us the things we’d most like him to. All we have from all of these relationships are promises.
This isn’t the cause of men’s problems, to be clear. But we can agree it’s a condition that lends itself to anxiety and fear of failure or betrayal.
Fear led me to do all kinds of dumb things as I progressed through business, faith and marriage.
I’ve nursed pride, ego, self-righteousness, greed, indifference and even hatred.
But when I dug deep enough, at the root of these emotions I found myself anxious and fearful.
I was afraid people I knew in business would take advantage of and manipulate me, so I held back in blessing them.
I was afraid Robin would love me less if I didn’t make a certain income, so I became a workaholic.
I was afraid of God’s anger, so I refused for years to own my inner junk and learn the true meaning of his grace.
The day eventually came for me in all these areas where I had to say, “No, fear! I’m not going to live this way for the rest of my life!”
It’s a Wonderful Life
I hope I don’t make it sound bad, or imply your life is a mess if this article rings true for you.
A lot of things in my life during those years went well. As is probably the case in your life.
But something shifted for me when I began to lead online mastermind groups.
Suddenly, I found myself as a coach or mentor to rooms full of men who were equally hungry for a similar change.
Faking a wonderful life while pursuing the not-so-mighty dollar turned up as a dud in their lives, just like it did in mine.
Their marriages varied, from being “good, not great” to the brink of divorce.
They were distant, angry or confused about their relationship with God.
A Cause Without a Rebel
A funny thing happens when you begin to pursue renewal in your life; people come out of the woodwork marching in the same direction as you.
Seeking intimacy with and obedience to God, coupled with genuine business success and a healthy marriage, turns you into a cause without a rebel.
In a profound and powerful sense, you become the cause, or at least, the face of it. Your life becomes a blaze, burning intensity and warmth. People are drawn to it.
In our online mastermind groups, I tell clients all the time about the parallel between business and baseball. A lifestyle rebirth like the one I’m describing also belongs in this category.
Baseball goes from “zero to sixty” with the pitch of a ball and the crack of a bat. Previously motionless players suddenly run in every direction to make plays at breakneck speed.
Business goes from zero to sixty as you pass a “tipping point,” where all of your preparatory hard work and sacrifice meet the right opportunity. After that, you have as much difficulty stopping your business from earning money as you did getting it to produce in the first place.
This is also true of the Mastermind Lifestyle, as we call it. When you’re pursuing excellence in ALL of these columns, eventually your life becomes a force of nature. This is the reward spoken of in Isaiah 54, the heritage of the servants of God.
While we never see the full measure of this life, it’s worth mentioning: a lot of us settle for a lot less of it than we could have.
This Christmas, I want to challenge you to ask God for the full measure of what he has for you.
If that includes joining a mastermind group moving in that direction, it gives me great honor to extend an invite to apply for the Iron Sharpens Iron Mastermind.
As well as a very merry Christmas to you and your family, from all of us at View From the Top.