I’m a fan of the “hedgehog concept” popularized by Jim Collins in Good to Great. I love the way it simplifies focus, a priority for me right now. In this line of thinking, an organization should focus on the “sweet spot” where passion(what you love to do), performance (where you deliver with excellence), and profitability (how you ensure financial sustainability) intersect. In my prayer time over the last month, God has revealed a deeper spiritual level of this framework, with the Apostle Paul as a role model. For myself as an individual leader, and for At Work on Purpose as a ministry, we need to focus on the “purpose point” where we find the intersection of perception (identifying God’s vocational path for us that serves His passion for the world), perseverance(performing at our best for the Lord even when conditions are at their worst) and perspective (remembering that God provides wherever He guides, financially and otherwise, and that we need to remain generous). Here’s the scripture that echoes these themes, and I encourage you to pray into your “Hedgehog Plus” this month . . .
Perception: Galatians 1:11-17:
“For I would have you know, brethren, that the gospel which was preached by me is not according to man. For I neither received it from man, nor was I taught it, but I received it through a revelation of Jesus Christ. For you have heard of my former manner of life in Judaism, how I used to persecute the church of God beyond measure, and tried to destroy it; and I was advancing in Judaism beyond many contemporaries among my countrymen, being more zealous for ancestral traditions. But when He who had set me apart, even from my mother’s womb, and called me through His grace, was pleased to reveal His Son in me, that I might preach Him among the Gentiles, I did not immediately consult with flesh and blood, nor did I go up to Jerusalem to those who were apostles before me; but I went away to Arabia, and returned once more to Damascus.”
Perseverance: 2 Corinthians 11:24-28:
“Five times I received from the Jews thirty-nine lashes. Three times I was beaten with rods, once I was stoned, three times shipwrecked, a night and a day I have spent in the deep. I have been on frequent journeys, in dangers from rivers, dangers from robbers, dangers from countrymen, dangers from the Gentiles, dangers in the city, dangers in the wilderness, dangers on the sea, dangers among false brethren; I have been in labor and hardship, through many sleepless nights, in hunger and thirst, often without food, in cold and exposure. Apart from such external things, there is the daily pressure upon me of concern for all the churches.”
Perspective: Philippians 2:3-4:
“Do nothing from selfishness and empty conceit, but with humility of mind let each of you regard one another as more important than himself; do not merely look out for your own interests, but also for the interests of others.”