Book Launch Party Details

He who was seated on the throne said, “I am making everything new!” Then he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.”

Revelation 21:5

New things are refreshing. There’s something about a new school year, a new outfit, a new thought to write down, or, perhaps even a new book.

I’m so excited because today is the day! Hopelessly Hopeful During Separation is available now. If you pre-ordered, thank you; Your copy is on the way.

This book is a 28-day devotional designed not to help a person determine if divorce or reconciliation is the path forward, but simply a hand to hold when no hope is found. If you haven’t already, order your copy (or two!) for yourself or someone who might benefit.

Celebrate with me tonight at 7 pm PT with some amazing people, including:

Make sure you mark your calendar for 7 pm Pacific Time tonight! Here’s the zoom information:

Join Zoom Meeting

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/89367866073?pwd=cXFrUmhHUThqTVFESVJJb2ZNaTF5Zz09

Meeting ID: 893 6786 6073

Passcode: 092821

One tap mobile

+12532158782,,89367866073#,,,,*092821# US (Tacoma)

+16699009128,,89367866073#,,,,*092821# US (San Jose)

Dial by your location

        +1 253 215 8782 US (Tacoma)

        +1 669 900 9128 US (San Jose)

        +1 312 626 6799 US (Chicago)

        +1 301 715 8592 US (Washington DC)

Meeting ID: 893 6786 6073

Passcode: 092821

Find your local number: https://us02web.zoom.us/u/krWO2Kswa

© 2021, Mollie Bond. All rights reserved. Originally published at www.molliebond.org.

Do You Feel Like Your Work Is Worth It?

Through Jesus, therefore, let us continually offer to God a sacrifice of praise—the fruit of lips that openly profess his name. And do not forget to do good and to share with others, for with such sacrifices God is pleased.

Hebrews 13:15-16

Was it worth it? This is a thought I have after the completion of a project. Did the nonprofit get closer to reaching its mission? Was there value added to people’s lives? Was it worth it?

Perhaps what I am really asking is did the sacrifice or cost to resources made a difference. Most of the time, I can answer yes. By completing the project, or event, or task, something changed for the better. Yes, the cost of time, the sacrifice of effort, the challenge was worth it.

And, sometimes by answering “yes,” I also see the ways to improve. To answer the question, I need to reflect on the process. John Maxwell says that it’s not the experience that matters but evaluated experience. In other words, taking the time to reflect and debrief after a major accomplishment (or lack thereof) is where the most value arises.

Taking time to see the challenge and how it was overcome could be a dichotomy. It’s also a practice that started long ago. Hebrews 13:15-16 caught my eye because “sacrifice” is associated with “praise.” I found that interesting—don’t we usually get excited and praise God when things are good and when there’s no sacrifice involved? We’re happy, and we relay that emotion to God.

In that happy place, though, are we reflecting on the obstacles that we had to overcome? And yet, it’s the sacrifices in life that enrich the celebration. Reflecting and remembering the challenges and how those were overcome can deepen the appreciation. It makes it not just a “yes” but a “YES!” to the question, “Was it worth it?”

Consider your current task, project, or work. Are you feeling the sacrifice? Look forward to the praise. Or perhaps you are in a place to evaluate your experience and see how the sacrifice has increased your praise.

Next week, I join the ranks of “published author” when Hopelessly Hopeful During Separation releases. It’s like most things in life—you have a dream, it takes more work than originally anticipated, and that makes the product that much sweeter. Was it worth it? I would say yes.

Save the date on September 28, 2021, at 7 pm for a zoom book launch! The link to join in next week is here, passcode 092821. You’ll hear from famous authors such as John Trent of Strong Families and Christine Soule of Providence Heights.

Pre-order Hopelessly Hopeful During Separation, a 28-day devotional for people who are separated from their spouse because of marital struggles, before September 28, 2021. A pre-order helps make the book more visible on September 28. Thanks!!

Photo by Emily Morter on Unsplash

© 2021, Mollie Bond. All rights reserved. Originally published at www.molliebond.org.

The Pride of Life

Do not love the world or anything in the world. If anyone loves the world, love for the Father is not in them. For everything in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—comes not from the Father but from the world. The world and its desires pass away, but whoever does the will of God lives forever.

1 John 2:15-17

Crickets. That’s what everyone heard after the latest idea from the founder. While the board had been—well—on board with previous ideas, this one seemed to fall a bit outside the nonprofit’s mission. And yet, there was that one time previously when it seemed odd and then it worked. So the unanimous votes of yeas became the chorus of approval to move forward.

The idea…it worked. The nonprofit grew, became more influential in the community, and helped thousands. And the founder not only proved faith to move mountains but became a desired speaker and decisionmaker for significant movements in the community. You could even say the founder’s name was synonymous with the nonprofit. So, what’s the problem?

“The pride of life,” John writes, is something to avoid. Pride can be sneaky. It seems like such a great thing to have pride in one’s life. Especially for a founder, to produce their own name recognition and tie all they do back to the nonprofit. That can be a good thing. The issue, as we see in 1 John, is when the pride of life becomes the focal point rather than the will of God and the pride of life is illuminating through the nonprofit.

It’s a phenomenon called Founder’s Syndrome when the leader seems to be taking the organization to the next level but gets wrapped up in the love of the organization. They care passionately, and don’t see that there’s a cliff in front of them because they are experiencing such great impact. They are unwilling to let others lead or have an opinion. And soon external audiences start to see the organization as the leader and vice versa.

What becomes dangerous about this situation is when it’s time for the founder to move on, and everyone knows the organization will die soon thereafter. Founder’s syndrome may creep in slowly, when someone isn’t confident to raise a hand, when the founder has to the only one to communicate internally or externally, when there’s no decision made without checking in with the founder. It’s their vision, after all. And…we rationalize.

In 1 John, we find that the love of the world and all it brings can be the downfall. Keeping God’s will in the center—the original vision of the organization—helps to keep the organization healthy, and its founder(s) out of loving the attention, the organization, or themselves more than the organization. When a founder who can’t take a vacation because projects will crumble, the protection of a reputation can break up an organization which wanted to do the will of God in the first place.

If you’re organization does not have founder’s syndrome, that’s great! I know of several great organizations that continued after the founder(s) retired, even within the last 10 years. Most of the time, it’s because they had a succession plan in place that allowed for the growth of future leaders and a laser-focus on the mission. Continue to avoid the pride of life, stay the course, and keep the focus on the will of God.

What organizations do you know that successfully navigated around founder’s syndrome? Share it on Facebook @HopelesslyHopefulBooks. https://www.facebook.com/HopelesslyHopefulBooks

Pre-order Hopelessly Hopeful During Separation, a 28-day devotional for people who are separated from their spouse because of marital struggles, before September 28, 2021. A pre-order helps make the book more visible on September 28. Thanks!!

Photo by engin akyurt on Unsplash

© 2021, Mollie Bond. All rights reserved. Originally published at www.molliebond.org.

P.S. Save the date on September 28, 2021 at 7 pm PT for a zoom book launch party! More details to come in the upcoming weeks.

Wake Up

Wake up! Strengthen what remains and is about to die, for I have found your deeds unfinished in the sight of my God. Remember, therefore, what you have received and heard; hold it fast, and repent. But if you do not wake up, I will come like a thief, and you will not know at what time I will come to you.

Revelation 3:2-3

“Yes, we’ll do that, someday.” Someday can be such a terrible word. It can sometimes reveal a need for things to be perfect before being launched. “Someday” can also be a tagging out; getting out of the game. It can show a lack of energy and motivation for the mission.

It happens to the best of us. That lag during the lull when maintaining isn’t fun. The honeymoon phase of a new project, program, or nonprofit has worn off. It comes time to face the challenges that were unforeseen, to work out the kinks, and keep pushing forward even though the finish line isn’t quite in view yet.

While I most recently wrote about the imperative for nonprofit leaders to get good sleep each night (Prioritizing Sleep), this verse talks about when people get sleepy about achieving a mission. When you notice that your team needs to wake up, take heed of this verse:

  • Strengthen what remains. Review what has worked well thus far, and put your shoulder behind that, pushing that forward and leaving the weaknesses behind.
  • Find your unfinished deeds. What roadblock made you cast aside a task or project? Is now the time to pick that back up so that you can reach your mission?
  • Remember. It’s keeping the focus on why you started this thing that will help you complete it. Stay committed
  • Repent. Perhaps it hasn’t gone quite as you expected and predicted. Is there a time to just say, “I’m sorry I can’t get us there?” Perhaps that is the moment when a new partner will bring their fresh perspective to the challenge.
  • Wake up. While good, this thing won’t last. Don’t get caught being content in the mire.

Whatever God has put before you, maintain a level of curiosity, interest, energy, and commitment to the calling. Go forth with gusto. And, perhaps, someday, you’ll sleep better too, knowing you’ve done your best.

Which option do you take when you are feeling sleepy about reaching your mission? Share it on Facebook @HopelesslyHopefulBooks. https://www.facebook.com/HopelesslyHopefulBooks

Pre-order Hopelessly Hopeful During Separation, a 28-day devotional for people who are separated from their spouse because of marital struggles, before September 28, 2021. A pre-order helps make the book more visible on September 28. Thanks!!

Photo by Laurisa Deacon on Unsplash

© 2021, Mollie Bond. All rights reserved. Originally published at www.molliebond.org.