Theology – God ideas

Nadine, my wife knows that I despise airports. I need to prepare subconsciously at least a day in advance. The queues, hitches and glitches are like rough graded sandpaper to any traveller wanting smooth passage through an airport terminal. Baggage weigh-ins, baggage wrap, UPS and missing baggage. Immigration officials who make no eye contact, and while I am confident to speak in front of thousands, I manage to become dry mouthed and unsettled in front of them. Next comes finding a decent spot to sit and wait until called – a challenge in itself. 

All of this stress becomes reason enough to find a little refuge in an airport bookstore. During one of these airport experiences I spent some soul recovery time paging through someone’s book on ideas. I was too distracted to take note of who the author was, a real pity, as I would be keen to get my hands on that book again. In that brief moment, I was able to capture some of his genius as I was flipping through his work. 

At the beginning of any year, many of us have had time out to reflect and consider plans for the future. There is no doubt that we become inspired and keen to see all of our ‘holiday thought’ inspirations come to fruition. I decided to devote this blog to the clever ‘dude’ who wrote on how to keep ideas. This is what he had to say…

“A mind that feeds only on itself is soon undernourished, becoming weak and incapable of creative, progressive thought. Stimulation from others is excellent mind food.”

Ideas are fruits of your thinking. But they’ve got to be harnessed and put to work in order to have value.

Each year an oak tree produces enough acorns to populate a good sized forest. Yet from these bushels of seeds, only one or two acorns will become a tree. The squirrels destroy most of them and the hard ground beneath the tree doesn’t give the few remaining seeds much chance for a start. So it is with ideas. Very few bear fruit. Ideas are highly perishable. If we’re not on guard, the squirrels (negative thinking people) will destroy most of them. Ideas require special handling from the time they are born until they are transformed into practical application. Here are a few ways to harness and develop your ideas:

  1. Don’t let ideas escape. Write them down. Everyday lots of good ideas are born, only to die quickly because they aren’t nailed to paper. Fence them in. Once the idea is written down,  it begins to look tangible and you can see what needs polishing. In order for your idea to have value, someone else needs to buy it –  constant improvement of your idea will help you to sell your idea. 
  2. Review your ideas. Put them in a place where you can look at them frequently. 
  3. Cultivate and fertilise your idea. Make your idea grow. Think about it and tie the idea to related ideas. Read things to enhance it. Investigate all the angles. When the time is ripe, put the idea to work for yourself, your job and your future.
  4. Join and participate in at least one group outside your occupational interests. Associating with people who have different job interests will broaden your thinking and help you to see the bigger picture. You’ll be surprised how mixing regularly with people outside of your occupational area will stimulate your on-the-job thinking.

Success often means that detours are necessary and sometimes many of them. When we need to detour, we don’t have to change our goals, we just need to travel a different route.