Thursday, March 01, 2012

Preparing for Advice...

One of the best parts of the trip to Sarasota last week was an opportunity to meet Lee Robison.  Lee is the Senior Minister of the Sarasota Christian Church.  Lee has been at SCC for over 30 years and is doing an incredible job leading that church.

Lee and his wife, Shari, are generous people.  Lee took time to have lunch with us on Thursday.  Plus, Lee and Shari met us for supper on Saturday night.

Since Lee has so much experience in ministry, I was really looking forward to asking him questions.  As Proverbs says, "The way of a fool seems right to him, but a wise man listens to advice." (Prov. 12:15)  I know that I need a lot of wise counsel around me in life!

When seeking advice, I never want to show up unprepared! I always want to make the most of our time together.  That's why I take a few steps before the meeting to get ready.

  1. Pray.  Ask God that He would use this opportunity as a time to honor Himself and expand His Kingdom.
  2. Do your homework.  Before I met with Lee, I learned as much about him and his ministry as I could.  I checked out his church website.  I asked Amanda and Gary to share about Lee from their previous experiences with him.  I listened to sermons he had preached.
  3. Make a list of questions.  I went to Sarasota with a list of questions I intended to ask Lee.  These questions were not all original with me.  I asked friends to send me questions they would ask if given the opportunity.  Even though I didn't make it through my entire list of questions because of time, I was able to email Lee the remainder of my questions and get his response that way.  
  4. Listen.  I know that seems obvious, but too many times we are thinking about what we are going to say next, or how to phrase the next question.  When we do this we cannot hear the advice we are seeking in the first place.  That's why I remind myself to listen.  If you listen, you can create a conversation with the person you are seeking advice from, which in turn can lead to better questions and better advice from them.  

I'm sure there are more things you can do to prepare for seeking advice.  If you have any suggestions, I'd love to hear them.

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