Lighten up Francis

Back in my single days, my roommate and good friend Nick and I had a very quick, effective and humorous way to get each to re-focus. When life got a little too busy and one of us would start to respond to just about everything by being a tad too intense, all we had to do was quote the great Sgt. Hulka from the movie “Stripes.”  In a low gravel-laden voice, with a slight head tilt, the admonition, “lighten up Francis,” would have the last word. Immediately, we’d both laugh and be reminded that God has the ultimate control and one of was meddling with His authority.

At work, I still need the same nudge every now and then to get my attitude and thoughts back in line, especially when I’m getting a little too intense and meddling into God’s authority. Leadership will do that to you if you’re not careful. What helps me is a simple verse from The Message that is always at the top of my email. I never delete it.

“Put God in charge of your work, then what you’ve planned will take place.”  Psalm 16:3

I still need to work and I still need to plan. I’m not excused from those responsibilities. It’s that putting “God in charge” thing that I trip over sometimes. I often forget that if He originates the plan, He WILL make it happen but it might not coincide with my timetable and my list of details. On my better days, I remember this and it really does help to calm me and to put things into perspective.

Find your Sgt. Hulka verse and “lighten up Francis.”

Ross McCampbell
WBCL – Executive Director
rsmccamp@wbcl.org

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