Posted: February 23, 2012 by Rob Voyle
Have you ever been tempted by a job offer that raised little voices of "something's not quite right here?"
Or have you got caught in job search desperation that you took a job that really wasn't right for you?
Last week I reflected on the transfiguration of Jesus and how transformation is preceded by confusion. This week we go from transfiguration to temptation in the wilderness.
In the transfiguration Jesus' identity and purpose are revealed. In the temptations this revelation is clarified for what it is and what its not. Being the Son of God is not an opportunity for self-serving aggrandizement.
In the mountain top experiences of life, those moments of transfiguration, we discover new things about our selves and the world we live in. Like all great blessings they can also become great curses. Blind allegiance to these discoveries can lead to great errors. Or our egos can take hold of the discovery and make us think it is all about us and not about the One who is the Source of all blessing.
All discoveries, regardless of their origins, need to be tested and honed in the challenges of daily life and we need the humility to acknowledge that we may have got it all wrong.
St. Paul had a transfiguration experience on the Damascus road and got so wound up that he had to be dropped over the town wall in the middle of the night. The next time we hear of him is some thirteen years later. He took nearly two 7 year life cycles to understand what it all meant and to begin his public ministry.
Appreciative Inquiry Summits, Congregation visioning, or personal visioning may result in mountain top experiences, but the outcome needs to be tested in daily living. This testing may feel like a wilderness, times of false starts, and frustration. What is needed is to keep our eyes on the vision and a humble stubbornness to keep our feet on the path of love.
My friend and colleague Rev. Steve Ayres calls the temptations of Christ three job offers. When we are looking for work, like Jesus, we may be tempted by many situations that are really not a good to match for our skills or are authentic to our calling.
In addition to being the Vicar of Old North Church in Boston, Steve is a coach specializing in clergy deployment. Steve, my wife Kim, and I will be teaching a series of classes in Byfield, MA (north of Boston) in May 21-25 in which we will look at clarifying personal purpose and career development.
You can find Steve's deployment blog at: http://stephentayres.com/
You can find more about the program at: http://www.clergyleadership.com/training/schedule.cfm
In the meantime I wish you great visions and the clarity of mind to pursue them in the midst of the great temptations of life.
With blessings on your life and work Rob Voyle
The Rev. Dr. Rob Voyle is a leader in the development and use of appreciative inquiry in church and coaching settings.
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