January 9, 2023
Kano Jigoro, the creator of the martial art Judo, was born in 1860 in Japan. He was born to a fairly affluent family and was blessed to attend private schools growing up. There was only one problem—he was a shrimp. In his teenage years, he stood 5’2 and weighed only 90 lbs. As a result of his small stature, he was frequently bullied and pushed around by his classmates.
One of his relatives recommended that he try Jujitsu. He fell in love with the sport and continued to train and perfect the moves. Over time, he began to improve on the techniques he had learned in his Jujitsu training. He called this new form and style of martial arts, “Judo”. Judo eventually caught on and became so popular that it became an Olympic Sport.
While on his deathbed, Kano had one request. He asked that he be buried in his white belt. For those of you unfamiliar with Martial Arts, the white belt is for the beginner. The black belt is for the Master. For all his many years of training and mastery you would think Kano would want to be buried in his black belt. When those standing around his bed asked him why, he answered, “For where I am going, I want to go with the mindset of a beginner.”
The best leaders have "black belt” skill with a “white belt” mindset. They realize no matter how much they know and have experienced, there is still more to learn. They are as NBA Coach Kenny Atkinson says, “humble and curious.” They are continually striving and pushing to learn more and looking for ways to apply what they have learned to their leadership, team, and business.
"Do not forsake wisdom, and she will protect you; love her, and she will watch over you. The beginning of wisdom is this: get wisdom. Though it cost all you have, get understanding. Proverbs 4:6-7 (NIV)
"The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you'll go.” ― Dr. Seuss
Here at the church we have a power phrase that embodies these values of hunger for growth and teachability. It’s “we are life-long learners!” As a young pastor, before we had the internet, I would travel 8 hours one way just to search through some old bookstores. I’d search high and low through stacks of dusty books, hoping I might find something that would help me better my craft. I realized early on that if I stopped learning I stopped growing.
Think about this, Warren Buffet is worth 75 billion dollars. But what I find fascinating, is that he spends 5-6 hours a day doing nothing but reading. Not networking with people, visiting factories, or crunching numbers — READING! He said, “I’ve made it a point to go to bed smarter than when I woke up.”
At the end of 2022, I asked our staff to turn in a personal growth plan to me for 2023. An intentional, simple, typed out plan that would line out how they were going to grow each day. If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail. I want to encourage you to do the same—if you want to experience a new season of abundance in 2023, you need new systems for growth.
15 Invaluable Laws of Growth — John C. Maxwell
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God is for You!
COTR Marketplace Ministries is a ministry for those in the marketplace and those interested in starting a business. Lifelong learners, entrepreneurs, businessmen, and businesswomen, meet to grow in their leadership and skills. This is a great place to network, build relationships and exchange ideas!
Join us this Saturday, January 14, 2023 at 5pm in the main campus lobby. We will have guest speaker, acclaimed author, Dr. Eli Jones. He is is an academic administrator, entrepreneur, professor, business leader, and author of "Run Toward Your Goliaths". His faith journey will inspire you to face your insurmountable challenges.
Dinner and childcare are included in the price of your ticket. Purchase your tickets online for just $12 or $15 at the door.