Friday, January 11, 2008

Homeland Security and Marko

I started the day at a meeting with Homeland Security which sounded pretty interesting. It's a strange part of the new job that I got a call from Santa Ana Homeland Security and they were meeting with city businesses and non-profits to create partnerships and plan for any future natural disaster or terrorist act. It was actually pretty cool and I'm excited for how we can serve our community in ways that will impact the community now, but will also prepare the church to be a light and a help in any future disaster.

Then my lunch appointment got canceled because he was sick so I just had my meeting at 2:30 with Marko. Mark Oestreicher is the President of Youth Specialties, but that's not why we were meeting. I let him know last month about my new position and he told me how when he was 33 he was the Student Ministries Pastor at Lake Avenue Church in Pasadena and was moved into the Executive Pastor position. He was supervising people 20+ years older than him at a large church that was around 100 years old. The similarities are crazy with me being 33 and moving from S.M. Pastor to Executive Pastor of Ministry at a large church around 75 years old. He also used to work at Calvary Church so he knows where I come from.

So in light of all those similarities (and that he seems like an interesting, thoughtful guy) I thought it would be awesome to pick his brain. It was a great time. He had some good thoughts and some great reminders. Here were some of my takeaways apart from just being heard by a man I respect.
1. He asked me first about my non-ministry life which was symbolic to me of what should come first.
2. He said to pursue humility as much as leadership skills or insights.
3. He said to make sure that I had a couple guys who understand my church context well that I can talk about everything I am experiencing and the pressures of my position who I won't have to ever use the "authority card" with.
4. He also had me think through "power" and the proper perspective of it and how to use it properly.
5. Finally, we talked about how to retain who you are in the midst of a "serious" position. I like how he is a bit wild and crazy (maybe more than a bit) while being in positions like Executive Pastor and President. I have felt pressure to dress differently and act differently and he had some good thoughts on it. He said I should still play pranks on my staff and make sure my office and hair aren't too stuffy. I felt a sense of "exhale" for myself in that. Be yourself. Be wise, but be yourself.

We talked about other things, but that was the heart of it. Thanks Marko!!


Matt Doan said...

Oh how I wish I could have been you. I don't think I can ever top this in terms of hanging out with someone cool.

marko said...

i really enjoyed our time, eric