Am I Getting Better

What am I doing to get better?

I was listening to a speaker last week, and he just sort of dropped that question on me. Am I getting better? Am I even trying to get better? Better at what?

My background is manufacturing. We have a practice–put into action in the better companies–called continuous improvement. Everyone in the plant is encouraged to think about things and look for ways to improve. We are encouraged to speak up when we see something.

Getting better must become a way of life. To begin with, we must be the kind of person who wants to get better. Of course, we need to define what we want to get better at. Better at relating. A better disciple.

I’m not here to teach Lean manufacturing or kaizen. But many of the Spiritual Disciplines (or practices) discussed by Richard J. Foster in “Celebration of Discipline” have helped me over the years. Even before I knew they had a name. Here’s a refresher:

  • Meditation (still the mind and focus on the issue)
  • Prayer (talk with God about it–including listening)
  • Fasting (watch what you eat so that you avoid the sluggish feeling–my special focus now)
  • Study (feed the mind so that it grows)
  • Simplicity (don’t overly complicate things and keep life uncluttered)
  • Solitude (sometimes you have to withdraw to think)
  • Submission (if you already know everything, then you’ll never grow)
  • Service (helping out is a fantastic growth opportunity)
  • Confession (realize you have not done your best)
  • Worship (get together with others to share stories, offer encouragement)
  • Guidance (seek help from those who have been there)
  • Celebration (just like the three parables about “lost things”, gather friends and celebrate progress)

Just a few notes. Hope it helps.

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