Stripped of Self

Stripped of Self

Hey team, so here we are. It’s another Wednesday Workshop.

I want to give you a quote by a man named Leonard Ravenhill. “Everyone wants to be clothed with power but no one wants to be stripped of self.”

When I read that it kind of got in my mind. I got stuck on the thought process around how true the statement kind of is.

“Everyone wants to be clothed with power but no one wants to be stripped of self.”

Everybody wants to feel powerful. They want to feel in charge. They want to feel like they have, especially Alpha personalities, even like myself. And as I get older, I realize that the easiest way to having the best influence in my life is by stripping myself of who I am. And not feeling the need, I guess, of being in charge or being a person that has all the answers.

So often in life, we so badly want to be recognized or feel like we’re contributing. And the best thing that we can do is sometimes to contribute is to be a better listener. To be more open to what other people have to say.

I think I’ve done a better job, both as a parent and as a husband, in recognizing, and even as a leader, recognizing the fact that maybe I’m better off sitting still and not saying so much. In some cases, letting other people bring their thoughts and their ideas and thinking thoughtfully about those. Asking questions instead of giving answers or statements.

Sometimes my answers are not really answered at all; they’re just statements of thought. And sometimes they’re good thoughts. But it can make others feel stifled because, again, everybody wants to feel like they’re contributing.

As I was thinking about Raven Hill’s quote, everybody wants to be clothed with power.

And I don’t know if it’s really power I’m seeking, at least not anymore.

I guess maybe when I was younger, I had hair. Perhaps maybe at those times I did. But for me today, now, I want to contribute out of the respect and love that I have for those around me. But I want to do it in a wise way, and I want to be a better listener than I was yesterday. I want to be less of a talker and more of a hearer.

I recently heard Ernest Hemingway made a quote. He said, “We spend the first two years learning to speak and the next 60 after that learning to be quiet.” I kind of can identify with that.

I think most of my life, I spent the first nine or 10 years of my life with a speech impediment where people couldn’t even understand me. And I feel like I’ve spent the last 40 some years, 50 years, trying to catch up for the lost time of speaking.

And that’s not always great in some respects. While I do believe I have things to say, I also believe that others do too. And I’m getting more and more cognizant of that fact in myself, that being quiet and listening, being still and hearing others speak, is a powerful thing.

So on this Wednesday as you’re moving through the week, maybe like Ravenhill said, strip yourself, being stripped of self and who I am. It’s not about me. Sometimes it’s the path to wisdom and it’s the path to greatness and success is recognized and it’s not all about me.

The same is true in everything else. So again, be valuable, nothing less will do, and have a wonderful rest of your week. God bless you. I’ll see you next week.