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Beating Chaos with Purpose: Strategies for Integrating Faith and Business with Gary Harpst
18th March 2024 • Seek Go Create • Tim Winders - Coach for Leaders in Business & Ministry
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Are you feeling overwhelmed by the chaos of leadership and seeking a path that intertwines purpose with business acumen? In this impactful episode of Seek Go Create, host Tim Winders sits down with seasoned CEO Gary Harpst to explore the intricate dance between order and chaos in the world of business. They delve deep into how biblical principles can provide a foundation for creating meaningful success and the vital role of personal purpose in navigating life's turbulence. Join us as we uncover the wisdom Gary lays out in his book "Built to Beat Chaos" and discuss the transformational journey of integrating faith into leadership. This is a conversation that challenges conventional views on success and paves the way for a fulfilling approach to business and life — perfect for leaders and entrepreneurs craving a profound alignment between their work and spiritual values.

""We are designed to have dominion and bring order out of chaos, but it's pivotal to align that desire with our God-given purpose." - Gary Harpst

Access all show and episode resources HERE

About Our Guest:

Gary Harpst is a seasoned CEO, author, and thought leader who excels at integrating biblical principles into business practices. With extensive experience advising CEOs of growing companies, Gary brings a unique perspective to leadership and organizational development. His transformative "Lead First" philosophy guides leaders to build kingdom-minded values within their organizations, emphasizing the importance of purpose in both personal and professional realms. As an author, his book "Built to Beat Chaos" offers a blend of scripture, practical business skills, and scientific insight, aimed at senior leaders seeking to navigate their faith in the business landscape. Gary's commitment to fostering human relationships as assets in business sets a standard for excellence and stewardship that extends beyond mere financial success.

Reasons to Listen:

1. Discover how to thrive amidst chaos: Tune in to learn from Gary Harpst's insights on finding purpose and creating order, blending practical business strategies and deep spiritual wisdom to navigate life's turmoil effectively.

2. Explore the transformative power of purpose: Gary Harpst reveals how aligning business practices with biblical principles can redefine success and leadership—essential listening for senior leaders seeking to integrate faith and work.

3. Gain life-changing perspectives on work and retirement: Join the candid conversation between Tim Winders and Gary Harpst as they challenge conventional views on retirement, redefine lifelong purpose, and share crucial lessons for both young and seasoned professionals.

Episode Resources & Action Steps:

### Resources Mentioned:

1. **Book:** "Built to Beat Chaos" by Gary Harpst – A valuable resource for senior leaders interested in integrating their faith with business and understanding the role of purpose in overcoming chaos.

2. **Website:** Leadfirst.ai – Gary Harpst's website that offers various resources and writings about the intersection of faith and business, including tools for managing a growing business.

3. **Sermon:** Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5-7) – A biblical passage that host Tim Winders listens to every morning, which could serve as a spiritual resource for listeners.

### Action Steps:

1. **Reflect on Purpose and Order:** Take time to consider your own approach to chaos and order in your life and business. Reflect on your personal purpose and how it can guide you in bringing order out of chaos.

2. **Evaluate Your Business Practices:** If you're in a leadership role or running a business, think about how you can integrate biblical principles and kingdom-minded values into your daily practices. Start by focusing on the human relationship aspect and stewardship within your organization.

3. **Cultivate Your Spiritual Life:** Incorporate spiritual disciplines into your daily routine, such as listening to biblical sermons like the Sermon on the Mount, to help ground your decisions and maintain a centered approach to life and business challenges.

Resources for Leaders from Tim Winders & SGC:

🔹 Unlock Your Potential Today!

  • 🎙 Coaching with Tim: Elevate your leadership and align your work with your faith. Learn More
  • 📚 "Coach: A Story of Success Redefined": A transformative read that will challenge your views on success. Grab Your Copy
  • 📝 Faith Driven Leader Quiz: Discover how well you're aligning faith and work with our quick quiz. Take the Quiz

Key Lessons:

1. Navigating Chaos with Purpose: Gary Harpst emphasizes that leaders need to understand their purpose to bring order out of chaos. By aligning desire, reason, imagination, and action with their true purpose, they can rise above the chaos instead of contributing to it.

2. The Significance of Biblical Integration into Business: The conversation highlights that biblical principles are not only applicable but also essential to running a successful business. Gary and Tim discuss the importance of operating with kingdom-minded values and caring genuinely for people, which brings a different kind of return on investment – one that values human relationships as much as financial success.

3. The Three-Layered Pyramid Model for Business Success: Gary introduces a model that focuses on base aspects such as what people want, middle layers that deal with soul care, and a top layer centered on a unique gospel impact. Excelling in the foundational and middle layers is crucial for effective discussions and operations concerning the gospel's impact through business.

4. The Importance of Competency in Business and Spiritual Matters: Gary Harpst asserts that caring for people and sharing the gospel are deeply connected to how well a business is run. Competency in both business practices and spirituality enhances the ability to witness effectively.

5. Rethinking Retirement and Success: Both Gary and Tim share their perspectives on continuing to work full-time and live purposefully beyond the typical retirement age. They encourage a view on success that isn’t tied to societal pressures but is rooted in fulfilling God's unique design and purpose for each person, challenging the traditional business metrics of scalability, profit, and exits.

Episode Highlights:

00:00 Rediscovering and appreciating "The Lord of the Rings."

05:49 Seeing life as engineered for a purpose.

12:24 Growth comes from painful but necessary experiences.

20:36 Redefining success and its societal influence.

22:44 Embrace uniqueness, don't compare yourself to others.

30:38 Challenges of business growth and human relationships.

34:02 Challenges integrating spiritual and business life discussed.

42:53 Morning routine includes listening to Matthew 5-7.

49:04 God urges Cain to master the internal chaos.

54:00 Leaders understand desire, reason, imagination, and action.

55:12 We're designed for power, but with purpose.

01:00:57 Book for those interested in business and science.

Thank you for listening to Seek Go Create!

Our podcast is dedicated to empowering Christian leaders, entrepreneurs, and individuals looking to redefine success in their personal and professional lives. Through in-depth interviews, personal anecdotes, and expert advice, we offer valuable insights and actionable strategies for achieving your goals and living a life of purpose and fulfillment.

If you enjoyed this episode and found it helpful, we encourage you to subscribe to or follow Seek Go Create on your favorite podcast platform, including Google Podcasts, Apple Podcasts, and Spotify. By subscribing, you'll never miss an episode and can stay up-to-date on the latest insights and strategies for success.

Additionally, please share this episode or what you’ve learned today with your friends, family, and colleagues on your favorite social media platform. By sharing our podcast, you can help us reach more people who are looking to align their faith with their work and lead with purpose.

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Mentioned in this episode:

Unleash Your True Leadership Potential with Tim Winders

Imagine embracing the full extent of the leadership potential you were created to fulfill. This isn't just a dream; it's a journey that begins today with Tim Winders, your mentor in transformative leadership. Through Tim's executive coaching, you'll dive into the core of what it means to be a truly influential leader – one who combines skill with vision and unwavering faith. It's about transcending conventional success, embracing your purpose, and discovering the joy in leading. If you feel called to become the leader you were always meant to be, book your free Discovery Coaching Call with Tim. This is where your transformative journey to authentic and purpose-driven leadership begins. Let's unlock the extraordinary leader within you.

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Transcripts

Gary Harpst:

I hope that people will have an aha moment to realize that

Gary Harpst:

God has called them to bring order out of chaos and not be its victim.

Gary Harpst:

And if you feel like you're a victim, It's because you haven't yet really

Gary Harpst:

clarified what your purpose is.

Gary Harpst:

Um,

Tim Winders:

In a world where leadership often feels chaotic and directionless,

Tim Winders:

how can biblical wisdom provide a solid foundation for guiding ourselves?

Tim Winders:

Today on Seek Go Create, we welcome Gary Harpst, a seasoned CEO, teacher,

Tim Winders:

keynote speaker, and thought leader who has seamlessly blended business

Tim Winders:

excellence with biblical principles throughout his impressive career.

Tim Winders:

From founding Solomon Software to creating Lead First, Gary has

Tim Winders:

demonstrated a profound commitment to developing effective leadership habits.

Tim Winders:

Rooted in spiritual truths.

Tim Winders:

His latest book, Built to Beat Chaos, Biblical Wisdom for Leading

Tim Winders:

Yourself and Others, offers a timely manual for navigating the

Tim Winders:

complexities Of modern leadership, Gary, welcome to seek, go create.

Tim Winders:

Thank you,

Tim Winders:

Tim.

Gary Harpst:

I'm looking forward

Tim Winders:

to this.

Tim Winders:

I am.

Tim Winders:

I'm looking forward to this too.

Tim Winders:

So you're coming at us from Ohio and I'm in Arizona and we've

Tim Winders:

got the black uniforms on here.

Tim Winders:

So you and I are obviously colorful guys in our black shirts, if someone

Tim Winders:

looks in my closet here in the RV, I've just got these black t shirts.

Tim Winders:

That's, that's it.

Tim Winders:

glad you're here.

Tim Winders:

We're going to have fun with this conversation.

Tim Winders:

I've read through most of your book and you and I line up in a lot of things

Tim Winders:

and we'll just have fun discussions.

Tim Winders:

But before I get too much farther.

Tim Winders:

What's your answer when someone asks you what you do in your many years of

Tim Winders:

experience and wide range of things you've done, but if someone asks you

Tim Winders:

what you do, what do you tell them?

Gary Harpst:

Well, have you ever seen the movie The Hobbit?

Gary Harpst:

There's, there's a scene in The Hobbit where Gandalf, who is a

Gary Harpst:

representative of an angel, according to the author, Tolkien, Gandalf shows

Gary Harpst:

up on the hobbit story and says, Hey, you want to go on an adventure?

Gary Harpst:

And, I think that's kind of what, what I'm, like Gandalf showing

Gary Harpst:

up with young entrepreneurs who are running a business and it's

Gary Harpst:

growing and they're on this journey.

Gary Harpst:

They have no idea how to keep all the balls in the air.

Gary Harpst:

And I was on that journey.

Gary Harpst:

40 years ago, and we went from one person to almost 500 over a period of years.

Gary Harpst:

And it was an amazing, exciting, scary journey.

Gary Harpst:

And so that's, I like working with CEOs of, or owners of small

Gary Harpst:

businesses that are growing rapidly.

Gary Harpst:

And they want to figure out how to manage the growth and integrate

Gary Harpst:

kingdom impact at the same time.

Tim Winders:

And, and I appreciate, I like the Hobbit example.

Tim Winders:

I actually, for some reason, felt urged a couple weeks ago to watch the

Tim Winders:

Lord of the Rings trilogy again, the one that now is 20 plus years old, the

Tim Winders:

Peter Jackson, and haven't seen it.

Tim Winders:

In a while.

Tim Winders:

And truthfully who has, you know, 10 hours to spare.

Tim Winders:

So I, I, I kind of sort of did it late at night and my wife didn't want to watch

Tim Winders:

it with me, but I watched through those.

Tim Winders:

And I, I, I've been, I've been really doing some deep kind of studies and

Tim Winders:

some biblical things and all that.

Tim Winders:

And I, and I, I think Tolkien would even say there's a lot of, I don't

Tim Winders:

know, this allegory or whatever he called it, but, but I mean, I did, you

Tim Winders:

know, you just see a lot of, I think at root, it's a good versus evil.

Tim Winders:

Story and, and, I actually enjoyed them and truthfully 20 plus years

Tim Winders:

later, they still hold the test of time and also fascinating.

Tim Winders:

So first thing I want to do, you and I, right before I hit record, we, we

Tim Winders:

started discussing a little bit about age and, and some things like that.

Tim Winders:

I think I want to start.

Tim Winders:

With that, because you mentioned 40 years ago, you were a startup guy.

Tim Winders:

And, and you and I are, we'll, we'll say we're in our 60 plus age bracket.

Tim Winders:

It's my wife got onto me one time.

Tim Winders:

She, she heard, heard me because we're in an RV.

Tim Winders:

She hears, I actually asked someone their age and it was a female and she got onto

Tim Winders:

me, but, but, you probably don't care.

Tim Winders:

You'll probably tell it.

Tim Winders:

How old are you?

Tim Winders:

You can tell us your age.

Gary Harpst:

Yeah, I'm 73 soon to be 74.

Gary Harpst:

And I love that, quite, I mean, the sort of the topic of how people

Gary Harpst:

think about work and retirement.

Gary Harpst:

It, that changed for me a long time ago.

Tim Winders:

Well, I've, I've just hit 60.

Tim Winders:

And as I shared with you, when we, before we started out, we're in kind of

Tim Winders:

Arizona where people are wintering and everyone is retired playing pickleball

Tim Winders:

and all that, which is awesome.

Tim Winders:

But in some ways it's discouraging to me.

Tim Winders:

And I don't want to, I mean, if that's someone's life's journey,

Tim Winders:

I'm not, I don't want to criticize it if that's what they believe, but

Tim Winders:

when I bring up that we have large.

Tim Winders:

Amounts of our population, Gary, in our age bracket that are essentially done.

Tim Winders:

I mean, I'm, that sounds harsh, but what comes to mind, what do you think

Tim Winders:

about this talent, this wisdom and all that there you're doing nothing.

Gary Harpst:

Yeah, I, I, I, my best way to respond to that is

Gary Harpst:

to explain how I think about it.

Gary Harpst:

I, I can't really step into their shoes, but my own.

Gary Harpst:

early in my life, I, begin to see the integration of

Gary Harpst:

the God calls us to purpose.

Gary Harpst:

He, we are, we are created for a purpose.

Gary Harpst:

I'm an engineer.

Gary Harpst:

You know, engineers are like hammers.

Gary Harpst:

They see everything as nails, you know, . And so I, when I look at the world

Gary Harpst:

and I look at myself, I see something that has been engineered for a purpose

Gary Harpst:

and, It turns out that I believe that purpose, that's part of the reason I

Gary Harpst:

wrote the book is that we're, we're actually built to overcome and to be

Gary Harpst:

creators and have dominion is the word used in Genesis, or over, you know,

Gary Harpst:

there's just so many different phrases, but basically it means you're not

Gary Harpst:

supposed to be a victim of this world.

Gary Harpst:

You're supposed to have an impact on it.

Gary Harpst:

And, so the idea of retiring.

Gary Harpst:

really doesn't enter my thinking.

Gary Harpst:

I'm, I'm either get up in the morning and I'm engaged in purpose or I'm not.

Gary Harpst:

And, whether I'm engaged at purpose, building a product or a service or

Gary Harpst:

visiting or caring for my neighbor or whatever, it's all purpose.

Gary Harpst:

And so I don't think about work as work.

Gary Harpst:

I just think about it's one way to use my time and my energy.

Gary Harpst:

And, and I try to just make sure I'm walking in the purpose God called me for.

Gary Harpst:

So it retirement is not a term I use.

Gary Harpst:

I, I, my goal is my goal personally is to live purposefully until I

Gary Harpst:

can't, you know, and then I assume God will move me on to something else

Tim Winders:

is your pace different than it once was.

Gary Harpst:

I don't think so, at least from a time point of view.

Gary Harpst:

I, you know, my wife and I are both very engaged.

Gary Harpst:

She, she's in a full time ministry that's not a paid position, but

Gary Harpst:

she's working, you know, a good 40, 50 hours a week in that ministry.

Gary Harpst:

And I'm, I'm at least that number of hours.

Gary Harpst:

And, I talked to, other people my age, many of them are working full time.

Gary Harpst:

I mean, they're, they're putting their full time engaged that we don't punch a

Gary Harpst:

clock, but you know, I put in long hours.

Tim Winders:

Yeah, I'm going to, I'm, I'm going to come back to that because I think

Tim Winders:

that as is a good topic because it relates to purpose, but I have a very pointed

Tim Winders:

question I want to ask for the listener.

Tim Winders:

I want you to address this.

Tim Winders:

There could be a listener that let's just say they're in their twenties or

Tim Winders:

thirties and they've just popped in.

Tim Winders:

They, they may have seen the title or whatever, and they've got.

Tim Winders:

Two 60 plus year old guys talking about principles and we're going to talk

Tim Winders:

chaos and leadership and business.

Tim Winders:

Could you real quick, I mean, I know we could, this could be a Holy Spirit type

Tim Winders:

answer, but could you tell that person why they need to stick around and listen

Tim Winders:

to us for the next 45 minutes to an hour?

Tim Winders:

Why it's important for someone younger to listen in on what

Tim Winders:

we're going to discuss here?

Gary Harpst:

Well, there's a verse in, in, let's see, I think it's in

Gary Harpst:

Ecclesiastes, it says, no, it's in Psalms, it says, teach me to number my days,

Gary Harpst:

that I might present a heart of wisdom.

Gary Harpst:

And the word number, it sounds like counting, and it is, but if you look

Gary Harpst:

at the other places that same Hebrew word is used, there's a richer meaning.

Gary Harpst:

It really means, teach me to under, to live purposefully and, and so what I would

Gary Harpst:

say to a younger person is, most of wisdom in life comes from understanding, the long

Gary Harpst:

term consequences of short term decisions.

Gary Harpst:

And for God has wired the universe so that we don't immediately understand

Gary Harpst:

the consequences of our decisions.

Gary Harpst:

in Ecclesiastes, it says the reason men do foolish things,

Gary Harpst:

is that there is a separation of time between when we do something

Gary Harpst:

and when we see its consequences.

Gary Harpst:

So one tool for you as a younger person is to make sure you allocate some time

Gary Harpst:

to some of us guys who have three, four or five decades, have been down the road

Gary Harpst:

and it can have seen and look back on things that we did 20 years ago, 30 years

Gary Harpst:

ago, and give you some insight that that would be my, there are advantages of being

Tim Winders:

older.

Tim Winders:

Yeah.

Tim Winders:

I was thinking earlier when we were talking about pace.

Tim Winders:

When I was much younger, I would have been definitely

Tim Winders:

categorized as a hustle and grind.

Tim Winders:

I'm an engineer too, by the way.

Tim Winders:

I'm, I'm a Georgia tech engineer and industrial and systems engineering

Tim Winders:

would be my, I guess, my field.

Tim Winders:

And I've always been systems.

Tim Winders:

So we're going to have a good conversation about process and things like that.

Tim Winders:

But, but, and, and so I was a hustle and grind guy.

Tim Winders:

And when I asked about pace earlier, I think something that I'm getting to is

Tim Winders:

I still have roughly the same hours.

Tim Winders:

But I, I don't think it's the grind or the hustle that I once had at a younger age.

Tim Winders:

You're nodding.

Tim Winders:

Would you agree with that?

Tim Winders:

I totally

Gary Harpst:

agree with you.

Gary Harpst:

I, I would call it this franticness now.

Gary Harpst:

I there's a, there's a centered.

Gary Harpst:

Peacefulness of the time I spend and it is different than 30 years ago.

Tim Winders:

Do you think that that was just part of our journey or

Tim Winders:

do you think if you had it to do over again with the wisdom now that

Tim Winders:

you could operate at a different?

Tim Winders:

I don't want to call it pace.

Tim Winders:

It's not ours.

Tim Winders:

You mentioned time.

Tim Winders:

We're going to talk more about time because I'm fascinated with

Tim Winders:

that conversation, but I do think that there's things that are

Tim Winders:

just going through our minds.

Tim Winders:

I think the word uses the word anxiety.

Tim Winders:

I think, I think many times I am not anxious for nothing as I should be.

Tim Winders:

I have anxiousness.

Tim Winders:

Like we've got employees, we've got workers, we've got payroll, we've got, and

Tim Winders:

all these things are rolling in my head.

Tim Winders:

And, and I look back now and I think I wish I hadn't allowed

Tim Winders:

that to take up as much space.

Tim Winders:

Does that make any sense?

Gary Harpst:

Yeah, it does and I would only thing I would add to that is My wife

Gary Harpst:

and I are working out and it is a battle But what the point of the analogy I want

Gary Harpst:

to draw is That you, you look back on your life and you think, I wish I had,

Gary Harpst:

I had more of the maturity I have now, you know, the only way you get muscles is

Gary Harpst:

by working out and, and, so I don't know that I can, maybe I could have gotten here

Gary Harpst:

a little faster cause I was slow on the uptake, but I don't think I could have.

Gary Harpst:

skipped over the experiences, the, the painful experiences that made me get on my

Gary Harpst:

knees before God and say, I can't do this.

Gary Harpst:

I'm, I'm done.

Gary Harpst:

I'm, I'm empty.

Gary Harpst:

And then he reveals a little more of myself and I just don't think I could

Gary Harpst:

be who I am unless I went through that.

Gary Harpst:

And, you know, to you younger guys, You know, about all you can say about

Gary Harpst:

that is God is on the other side and he's, he's through those hard times,

Gary Harpst:

but they actually are good for you.

Gary Harpst:

You just, I know it doesn't feel like it.

Gary Harpst:

In fact, Hebrews says that no discipline feels good in the moment.

Gary Harpst:

but when you come out on the other side and that's one advantage of being at

Gary Harpst:

our age, you start to see some of the.

Gary Harpst:

Upside of the things you went through.

Tim Winders:

Well, and we also have that hindsight where we can look back

Tim Winders:

and there are times, and I may ask you about a few of those here, because

Tim Winders:

our, one of our underlying themes is redefining success, you know, what

Tim Winders:

are the things that have molded us?

Tim Winders:

And many times it's some form of, I call them catalytic events, something that

Tim Winders:

we would define as definitely not good.

Tim Winders:

but, but I know for me, you know, it was business failure in Oh

Tim Winders:

eight that led to some really ugly stuff, but I looked back on it.

Tim Winders:

And my wife and I say this all the time, the listeners that have been listening

Tim Winders:

in, no, we would not be the people we are today were it not for that situation.

Tim Winders:

That issue.

Tim Winders:

I wouldn't be enjoying winter down here in Arizona.

Tim Winders:

You know, living in an RV, traveling, we've been traveling

Tim Winders:

now for over 10 years.

Tim Winders:

And I would probably still be camped out in a big house and middle of, you

Tim Winders:

know, where I was in Georgia, which was great, but I don't think that

Tim Winders:

was part of the plan and the purpose.

Tim Winders:

What are some things going back because you've got I think the introduction

Tim Winders:

that it's real funny You know, I use this word seasoned I think often

Tim Winders:

with people that are Mature we'll call it, you know, that means they've

Tim Winders:

been through a lot of stuff season.

Tim Winders:

That's what season means It's a good way of saying it.

Tim Winders:

But what are some you know, we don't want to go through the the career you've

Tim Winders:

had totally I want to get to talking about chaos and and definitely purpose

Tim Winders:

and process and people that that you have some expertise in, but what are a

Tim Winders:

few, I guess, ups and downs along your journey that have helped you arrive

Tim Winders:

at this place where you can discuss the things that you're, you're doing?

Tim Winders:

I guess, I guess maybe an aside bar question is, have you always been

Tim Winders:

locked in on your purpose or what helped you get to that place along the way?

Gary Harpst:

That, that locked in on purpose.

Gary Harpst:

Maybe, it's useful to talk about beginnings when I, when I, first decided

Gary Harpst:

to get into business for myself, it was a, joint conversation with two

Gary Harpst:

other fellows as an outcome of a prayer group, and I was a young person, 28,

Gary Harpst:

29 years old and single, and I was young early in my walk with the Lord.

Gary Harpst:

And I, I just felt.

Gary Harpst:

Conviction that I wanted to, whatever I do, really yield my life to him.

Gary Harpst:

And I didn't really know what that meant.

Gary Harpst:

I still don't, I still pray for wisdom on that.

Gary Harpst:

But the point was that, I refused to, to, Enter into this business, unless God

Gary Harpst:

gave me some kind of indication that, he was in it and I held out for months.

Gary Harpst:

I just prayed and prayed and prayed and, and some days I'd wake up and

Gary Harpst:

think, Oh yeah, I should do this.

Gary Harpst:

But it was more of a surface level thing.

Gary Harpst:

But one morning I still remember it.

Gary Harpst:

I woke up with this deep inner sense.

Gary Harpst:

that God was saying, yes, I'm giving you the green light on doing this.

Gary Harpst:

And the only reason I go through this for our young, younger people is,

Gary Harpst:

the value of really seeking the Lord for direction in your life, whether

Gary Harpst:

it's who you marry or what house you buy, you know, the big decisions.

Gary Harpst:

There is a huge blessing if you can get a word from the Lord, a grounding

Gary Harpst:

that says, I called you to this.

Gary Harpst:

I'm not, I haven't had that in every decision, so don't, don't get me wrong.

Gary Harpst:

But I do want to illustrate the benefit of that because as we got into the business.

Gary Harpst:

We several times thought this is over, you know, it, I mean, we're out of

Gary Harpst:

cash, he just every which thing, and I never ever doubted that God had called

Gary Harpst:

me into it in the middle of all that, even though there were times I thought

Gary Harpst:

the thing was going to come to an end, but it really made me realize he never

Gary Harpst:

promised to make the thing successful.

Gary Harpst:

He never, that was not part of the piece.

Gary Harpst:

The piece was, yes, this is the next step for you and go into it.

Gary Harpst:

And, that surety really was helpful.

Gary Harpst:

So that's a, an upside story.

Gary Harpst:

Now there are definitely downside stories.

Gary Harpst:

I want one time I'm a stubborn guy.

Gary Harpst:

My dad would came out of the depression.

Gary Harpst:

I was always taught to never, ever give up, you know, this, this, You're, you're

Gary Harpst:

never defeated if you don't give up.

Gary Harpst:

And so I latched onto some project in our company, spent millions of dollars

Gary Harpst:

on it, as the CEO, it was wrong idea.

Gary Harpst:

And I, but I, I was taught quitting was failure.

Gary Harpst:

And, so I remember one February saying, God, we can't afford this project.

Gary Harpst:

I need you to increase sales.

Gary Harpst:

That was my idea of a.

Gary Harpst:

And, God's idea of a solution was our sales dropped by 20

Gary Harpst:

percent or 25 percent suddenly and unexpectedly that same February.

Gary Harpst:

And he slapped me upside the head and said, you dummy, you

Gary Harpst:

need to get rid of that project.

Gary Harpst:

And, you've held on to it too long and he forced me into that.

Gary Harpst:

Well, I had to lay off half of our staff.

Gary Harpst:

We were 175 people at the time.

Gary Harpst:

we went down to 83 and these are, I mean, we're in the cornfields of Northwestern

Gary Harpst:

Ohio, these were all, I knew these people, their families, friends, et cetera.

Gary Harpst:

And, it was.

Gary Harpst:

the most challenging thing I had to do was to lay off half those people.

Gary Harpst:

But the choice was to do that or let the whole business go down.

Gary Harpst:

And that's not what we were called to do.

Gary Harpst:

So those things really shape you.

Gary Harpst:

You get, you get honest with God in the midst of that in

Gary Harpst:

a way, nothing else will do.

Tim Winders:

She brought up there that just got me thinking one was something

Tim Winders:

you were taught don't ever quit, never quit, never quit, never quit.

Tim Winders:

And to some degree, a lot of us are taught that.

Tim Winders:

And then the second thing that you brought up was what is success.

Tim Winders:

And many times things were taught feed into what we believe success is,

Tim Winders:

because I think we've got examples in scripture and other places where, and

Tim Winders:

I've had personal examples where God's told me to walk away from something.

Tim Winders:

And that's not an easy thing to do.

Tim Winders:

And I'm questioning, well, are you sure God?

Tim Winders:

Because you know, you know, daddy told me never to quit.

Tim Winders:

He said, who's your daddy?

Tim Winders:

I'm your dad, you know, who you're going to listen to, but, but what I'd

Tim Winders:

love for us to do now, because we, this whole topic of success, I think messes

Tim Winders:

with us and I think it leads into that purpose question and things like that.

Tim Winders:

How.

Tim Winders:

How have we gotten skewed in our definition of success?

Tim Winders:

I think that's one of the foundational places.

Tim Winders:

That's the reason we address it in the way we do here.

Tim Winders:

I think that many times what people do is.

Tim Winders:

They define success based on either material, financial or, which

Tim Winders:

there's nothing wrong with that, but for those that start going

Tim Winders:

down this biblical path, that's not necessarily our guiding force there.

Tim Winders:

And then also there's the way we were raised, the way society and culture is.

Tim Winders:

And then a whole nother factor is, you know, comparing ourselves to others.

Tim Winders:

So I guess I'm hitting a lot of different things here for you to talk about.

Tim Winders:

Success and maybe how you go about defining success now

Tim Winders:

at this Stage of your life.

Tim Winders:

So that was a really big softball question for you to hit it

Tim Winders:

wherever you want to hit it Yeah, I

Gary Harpst:

appreciate the breadth of the question and it it's a deep deep

Gary Harpst:

question probably many different ways to attack it but You know, one of the

Gary Harpst:

things I noticed early in my life as a young believer Was that I would look at

Gary Harpst:

people more mature than I was And think that their life and their behavior was

Gary Harpst:

what it meant to be a Christ follower.

Gary Harpst:

And, and there's biblical reason for that.

Gary Harpst:

Paul says, you know, you should be like me in certain attributes or traits.

Gary Harpst:

But as I grew in my understanding, you begin to see the scriptural

Gary Harpst:

truth that God makes us different.

Gary Harpst:

And he equips us, with unique desires, unique skills.

Gary Harpst:

And not only top of that, he puts us in different time and seasons of history.

Gary Harpst:

You know, so Gary Harpst in the year, 1200 would have been doing different

Gary Harpst:

things than Gary Harpst in the year 2000.

Gary Harpst:

And if, if you believe in a sovereign God, you, every individual life

Gary Harpst:

is a masterpiece of uniqueness.

Gary Harpst:

Not only just in your DNA and all those sorts of things, but in the time and the

Gary Harpst:

history, the people, you know, the place you live, there's just nobody like you.

Gary Harpst:

And, as I grew to respect that, I mean, it took me decades to really get to the

Gary Harpst:

point, but answering your question, I began to really realize that when I.

Gary Harpst:

Look at other people and say, I should be like them.

Gary Harpst:

It is a form of idolatry.

Gary Harpst:

instead of being rooted in God, you made me and created me and gave me certain

Gary Harpst:

things, I should steward what it is you gave me, not spend my energy trying to be.

Gary Harpst:

Like someone else and, I still struggle with this because even at my age,

Gary Harpst:

I still look at the other day I was complaining to myself and to God about,

Gary Harpst:

well, so and so did this and they were a lot more successful with it than I

Gary Harpst:

was at this and, and I started attacking myself and saying, what did I do wrong?

Gary Harpst:

And, and, God keeps whispering, just take what I've given you and use it.

Gary Harpst:

And quit worrying about everybody else.

Gary Harpst:

And, so that success boils down to that.

Gary Harpst:

Having such a close relationship with God that you get comfortable

Gary Harpst:

in your skin with who God made you, you don't get comfortable.

Gary Harpst:

In, I don't know, relax.

Gary Harpst:

I mean, you're relaxed in your relationship with him, but you

Gary Harpst:

strive to do the best you can.

Gary Harpst:

You know, you, I, that idea of just being lazy around God, I

Gary Harpst:

don't, doesn't feel right to me.

Gary Harpst:

you know, I want to wake up and be engaged and give it all I've got,

Gary Harpst:

but know that it's not me, it's him.

Gary Harpst:

So there's, there's a fine line there between carrying the load

Gary Harpst:

yourself and walking in his path.

Gary Harpst:

I,

Tim Winders:

I've battled that too because I am, am generally, I'm guessing

Tim Winders:

you are too a, a quick decision maker.

Tim Winders:

Mm-Hmm.

Tim Winders:

that decides something.

Tim Winders:

I have a fair degree of confidence in my decision.

Tim Winders:

Mm-Hmm.

Tim Winders:

sometimes that gets me in trouble sometimes.

Tim Winders:

It's helpful in certain situations.

Tim Winders:

And, and, and I, you know, I get around some people, especially

Tim Winders:

when I was in Bible school, that they were extremely passive.

Tim Winders:

in waiting for the Lord.

Tim Winders:

And I feel as if one of the things the Lord spoke to me during that time was

Tim Winders:

he said, they, that many people that are, that are that way need a little

Tim Winders:

bit more of you in them and you need a little bit more of them in you,

Gary Harpst:

which is typical, right?

Tim Winders:

Yeah.

Tim Winders:

That's typical kingdom of God stuff.

Tim Winders:

But, but listen in business world, Gary, and then, and this is one of the

Tim Winders:

things that I think a lot of us struggle with, and I think it leads into a lot

Tim Winders:

of the things you talk about, though we have words like scale, we have

Tim Winders:

words like, profit loss, we have words like, how many employees do you have?

Tim Winders:

And, you know, revenue and you've, you've been through exits, which is.

Tim Winders:

A little bit of the Holy grail in businesses.

Tim Winders:

That's when, you know, we've had a number of them that we've interviewed

Tim Winders:

and, and I'll talk to people that have gone through an exit and just a few

Tim Winders:

weeks ago, we talked to one that he exited and then he felt as if he had

Tim Winders:

failed because he didn't know what his identity was after he went through the

Tim Winders:

exit, really odd, you know, it's like the thing that everybody is moving

Tim Winders:

towards, and then we talked to somebody who's done it, I still think that.

Tim Winders:

We, we have this natural tension between what we need to sit down and

Tim Winders:

listen to God and do what he tells us.

Tim Winders:

And then also what's going on out here in the world and what we think we need to do.

Tim Winders:

So somewhere along the way, I don't want to say you figured it out.

Tim Winders:

But you, you moved to a place where you had a better understanding and,

Tim Winders:

and I see where you've got, you've gone through three books, you've

Tim Winders:

gone through a few iterations.

Tim Winders:

I think you were once it was the six disciplines.

Tim Winders:

Now it's lead first.

Tim Winders:

Talk a little bit about, I don't know if you need to go back a few years,

Tim Winders:

but talk a little bit about the transition into where you are now.

Tim Winders:

And some things that led you to share and teach some of the

Tim Winders:

things you're talking about now.

Tim Winders:

Well, this is,

Gary Harpst:

It's a penetrating question and I, I, I'm answering it

Gary Harpst:

in a way that I don't think I would have answered even two years ago.

Gary Harpst:

So it tells you, you never stop learning back to your younger people.

Gary Harpst:

I had about a, my life, my professional life so far has been

Gary Harpst:

broken into about, in 20 year periods.

Gary Harpst:

I, when I was 30, I started a company.

Gary Harpst:

And we sold it 20 years later, that was named Solomon Software, grew very

Gary Harpst:

rapidly, and it was a, very successful business, technology business.

Gary Harpst:

The next 20 years was spent working with small, mid sized businesses, teaching

Gary Harpst:

them how to use business systems to manage growth, because I had just come out of

Gary Harpst:

a 20 year period where that was painful.

Gary Harpst:

I was growing 30, 40 percent a year just to keep up in our industry.

Gary Harpst:

And, it was, I had hair then, you know, and, so the next 20 years, I, I thought,

Gary Harpst:

well, how do you apply systems and processes and help people learn all that?

Gary Harpst:

Well, that 20 year period is coming to an, has come to an end.

Gary Harpst:

And I'm, I feel like God is leading me into another 20 year period,

Gary Harpst:

which is what lead first is, lead.

Gary Harpst:

First 20 years taught me about growth in business.

Gary Harpst:

The next 20 years taught me about systems and processes that I could have

Gary Harpst:

a lot applied to the first 20 years.

Gary Harpst:

And managed better.

Gary Harpst:

This third 20 years that I'm a couple of years into appears to

Gary Harpst:

be that, that God wants me to take overlay biblical principles.

Gary Harpst:

For caring for people and building an organization that's mission and values

Gary Harpst:

are more than just making a profit, but they're truly, kingdom minded.

Gary Harpst:

You know, Jesus in the, in the, the, when he was teaching us to pray says.

Gary Harpst:

our father who is in heaven, thy kingdom come and thy will be done.

Gary Harpst:

And so that's all background to an answer to your question.

Gary Harpst:

I now reflect back and look at what we built in Solomon software.

Gary Harpst:

We, we grew to have almost 60 million in sales, had 450 people.

Gary Harpst:

And, we sold the business.

Gary Harpst:

It was growing at a rate that.

Gary Harpst:

Well, it just, there were a lot of business reasons why it made sense.

Gary Harpst:

and the partners we exited and a lot of people got a fair amount of funds,

Gary Harpst:

including our employees, a lot of, stock options and those sorts of things.

Gary Harpst:

What I now realize, and I did not then, was there's another dimension to

Gary Harpst:

a business besides its balance sheet.

Gary Harpst:

It's the relationships of all the people.

Gary Harpst:

And the values that those people hold collectively.

Gary Harpst:

And when you sell a business, you pretty much guarantee that

Gary Harpst:

that is going to be destroyed.

Gary Harpst:

Third part.

Gary Harpst:

and I'm not saying you should never sell a business.

Gary Harpst:

I don't, that is not my, my.

Gary Harpst:

But as, as God has moved me into this third 20 year period, I've

Gary Harpst:

come to realize that there are all the levers, all the thing it takes

Gary Harpst:

to really run a good business.

Gary Harpst:

It's hard when you're growing fast and to deliver high quality products in a

Gary Harpst:

predictable way and do it profitably and hire the right people and train them.

Gary Harpst:

All those things are incredibly difficult.

Gary Harpst:

And if you do it well, Then you will grow and you will have increasing

Gary Harpst:

profits, which I'm in favor of profits.

Gary Harpst:

I think it's a sign of good stewardship that you, you're using

Gary Harpst:

the resources God has given you.

Gary Harpst:

And, you should be generous with it.

Gary Harpst:

What I did not really grasp is that the effort to keep, to grow a

Gary Harpst:

business and keep people to build an ecosystem that cares about people

Gary Harpst:

and loves on people the way God says.

Gary Harpst:

Another asset, it's not a financial asset and it's not a business process asset.

Gary Harpst:

It is a human relationship asset.

Gary Harpst:

And I now realize when we sold our business, we had a fair amount of that

Gary Harpst:

because of the way we'd run the business, but I didn't think of it as an asset.

Gary Harpst:

I just.

Gary Harpst:

Thought of the business in the dimension of, of market share and

Gary Harpst:

sales and those sorts of things.

Gary Harpst:

And, so it's a long answer to your question.

Gary Harpst:

I'm sorry for that, but

Tim Winders:

yeah, I think that's good because this is one of

Tim Winders:

the things that It's difficult about this type conversation.

Tim Winders:

We've had a lot of them here at CICO create very similar

Tim Winders:

to this, but I, I love it.

Tim Winders:

I, and I think it speaks to the friction, the tension, the contrast between a

Tim Winders:

kingdom of God business and a world system business and attempting to marry the two.

Tim Winders:

Because there is the ROI off the, off the, you know, the balance sheets and

Tim Winders:

the spreadsheets that's important.

Tim Winders:

But what you and I are discussing here is the ROI within the kingdom

Tim Winders:

of God, which is different.

Tim Winders:

And so that kind of leads to a question that's going to probably

Tim Winders:

get us down the path of discussing, some, a few more specifics.

Tim Winders:

And that is how, one of the things that I've observed, I'm going to be very,

Tim Winders:

I don't, I don't think this is, it's, it's, it's a dichotomy to me at times.

Tim Winders:

I have been around business most of my life.

Tim Winders:

I was actually saved in a business setting, which kind of is part

Tim Winders:

of how I came to be the way I am.

Tim Winders:

And one of the things I noticed was it was very rare that people could bring in.

Tim Winders:

Kingdom of God and or ministry principles into that and do it.

Tim Winders:

Well, sometimes it would get weird and different things like that.

Tim Winders:

Yeah, I agree.

Tim Winders:

And then I've been over on ministry circles.

Tim Winders:

I've been to Bible school.

Tim Winders:

We have a family foundation and things like that.

Tim Winders:

And many people in those areas, Gary, they don't even bring any

Tim Winders:

of the business principles in.

Tim Winders:

It's like everything is like this super hyper, hyper spiritual,

Tim Winders:

hyper, and that's not entirely bad.

Tim Winders:

But see, I think where we are is you and I are discussing right

Tim Winders:

here the intersection of those two.

Tim Winders:

Amen.

Tim Winders:

And so with that, what are some of the challenges that we have when all

Tim Winders:

of a sudden we're trying to bring these two, I'll call 'em realms.

Tim Winders:

I mean, I'll go ahead and bring, I'm in a deep study right now with my wife that

Tim Winders:

we're studying the Kingdom of God and the heavenly realm and the natural realm.

Tim Winders:

And I'm just realizing we're operating in different realms.

Tim Winders:

But yet here we are with the business, with investors,

Tim Winders:

with employees, with people.

Tim Winders:

So I know that's another, we're doing some deep heavy questions here, aren't we?

Tim Winders:

What are, what are some, what are some reasons why, what are some reasons,

Tim Winders:

Gary, why people can't do it easily?

Tim Winders:

I mean, cause you would think if someone's a Sunday go to church guy or

Tim Winders:

girl, I'm sorry, let me not be sexist here and they run a company or they go

Tim Winders:

to work in a business Monday through Friday, they ought to be able to bring

Tim Winders:

those together just perfectly because they're coming from one person, but yet.

Tim Winders:

They don't.

Tim Winders:

Why?

Gary Harpst:

Yeah, you frame, I think, really significant questions.

Gary Harpst:

And I thought a lot

Tim Winders:

about that.

Tim Winders:

Do we need to go lighter?

Tim Winders:

Do we need to go lighter questions?

Tim Winders:

Do we need to go light?

Tim Winders:

No, I

Gary Harpst:

love them.

Gary Harpst:

And I thought a lot about this particular one.

Gary Harpst:

And the term that comes to my mind is integration.

Gary Harpst:

Balance.

Gary Harpst:

versus integration.

Gary Harpst:

God designed an integrated universe, not a balanced universe.

Gary Harpst:

And many of us go through life thinking we need to achieve balance that, okay,

Gary Harpst:

I'll give God some of this on Sunday.

Gary Harpst:

I'll give my wife and kids some time here.

Gary Harpst:

I'll give my work some time here.

Gary Harpst:

And we have this as opposed to figuring out, wait a minute,

Gary Harpst:

how do I weave my spirituality?

Gary Harpst:

into my relationship with my kids and my wife and my work.

Gary Harpst:

How do I even weave my work back into my family so that they see how I handle that?

Gary Harpst:

That's an integrated view.

Gary Harpst:

And the reason I, well, I'm sure there's several reasons

Gary Harpst:

that we don't do that very well.

Gary Harpst:

But today, I think one of the reasons is just fear that we, we think we can't.

Gary Harpst:

And, there's the, you know, the social pressure to to avoid those things,

Gary Harpst:

and that seems to be increasing, talking about, faith, but we can't

Gary Harpst:

blame that 100 years ago because it wasn't social media 100 years ago,

Gary Harpst:

and we, we didn't do it then as well.

Gary Harpst:

As well as we should have, or we wouldn't be in the situation we're in today.

Gary Harpst:

And so I think there's, a lack of skill.

Gary Harpst:

There's a fear factor and a lack of skill.

Gary Harpst:

And so today lead first, one of the first things we have to do, remember I mentioned

Gary Harpst:

to you, we come alongside young CEOs, but for one of the first things we have to do

Gary Harpst:

is attack the idea that they can't do it.

Gary Harpst:

And, we've, we've thought about this a lot and think one way to explain this.

Gary Harpst:

We have to give the CEO a way to talk about why they're doing this and that it's

Gary Harpst:

not a threat to those who don't believe as they do, and the way we've done it is,

Gary Harpst:

is, think about this base layer, we'll think about a pyramid with three layers

Gary Harpst:

and in the base layer is what is it that.

Gary Harpst:

people want from a business.

Gary Harpst:

I don't care what faith you are, whether you're an atheist, whatever.

Gary Harpst:

And most people agree that they would like a business that's healthy.

Gary Harpst:

So it's going to be around next year.

Gary Harpst:

My job's going to be last.

Gary Harpst:

They'd like a business that's growing because they want to

Gary Harpst:

have new opportunities later on.

Gary Harpst:

They'd like management that they can trust.

Gary Harpst:

And an environment that works well enough that it's not total chaos at work.

Gary Harpst:

You know, those are things, that base layer of the pyramid, it

Gary Harpst:

doesn't matter what your faith is, you say, yep, we agree on those.

Gary Harpst:

Then you can go up a layer, and there's more and more of this

Gary Harpst:

awareness growing right now.

Gary Harpst:

We call it, there's, the secular world even calls it soul care.

Gary Harpst:

It's the idea of beginning to look at people as humans.

Gary Harpst:

and outside of work, what, what, what's going on holistically in their life?

Gary Harpst:

They, and, it, everybody agrees with that.

Gary Harpst:

They would like to be around people that care about them.

Gary Harpst:

And they don't care whether you're Hindu or Christian or whatever.

Gary Harpst:

The question is whether you care.

Gary Harpst:

And so these first two layers are really not threatening at all.

Gary Harpst:

And, so as a Christian to go in and say, look, these two

Gary Harpst:

layers are important to me.

Gary Harpst:

And here's why my, my relationship with the guy I believe in holds me

Gary Harpst:

accountable to doing these things.

Gary Harpst:

And, is it in your interest to work for a company where you know that I, as the

Gary Harpst:

owner, am held accountable by, I feel like I'm held accountable to treat you right.

Gary Harpst:

Is that threatening to you?

Gary Harpst:

And it shouldn't be.

Gary Harpst:

And, so the third layer is more controversial, but this is the way I

Gary Harpst:

explain it, I say, you know, the first layer is something a good business can

Gary Harpst:

do for you, the second layer is what your friends and neighbors can do for you.

Gary Harpst:

There is a third layer that is unique to the gospel.

Gary Harpst:

Which is there are some things that Jesus can do for you that nobody else can.

Gary Harpst:

I mean, I can, I can give you money if you need it or take you to the

Gary Harpst:

hospital, but I can't heal your past.

Gary Harpst:

I can't give you a new identity.

Gary Harpst:

I can't give you eternal life.

Gary Harpst:

And so we, we call this a kingdom impact model, these three layers.

Gary Harpst:

And we are teaching our CEOs to be open about that third layer and say, look,

Gary Harpst:

I believe that this layer is available.

Gary Harpst:

If you don't, that's fine.

Gary Harpst:

But if you want to know more about it, here are some ways to learn about

Gary Harpst:

it and to just be open about it.

Gary Harpst:

So that's how we're attacking the problem.

Gary Harpst:

Well, the good

Tim Winders:

thing from what I've heard, I love that model is that if

Tim Winders:

you do well in that base level and then that next level up, then I, I believe

Tim Winders:

it naturally draws people to have a discussion at that level, the challenge.

Tim Winders:

And listen, we, we're not going to go down this path, the challenge that we

Tim Winders:

have in, we'll call it church world or Christian world or whatever now is that

Tim Winders:

people are not doing some of those base.

Tim Winders:

Yeah, they're, they're not performing well when they're stewarding

Tim Winders:

over a business or a church or, or, or a department or anything.

Tim Winders:

And then they're really not doing well in how they're

Tim Winders:

interacting with their neighbor.

Tim Winders:

Either totally agree.

Tim Winders:

Regardless of what their neighbor looks like, acts like or does, they are getting

Tim Winders:

in a mode, and I don't want us to go down that path because we, we've got enough

Tim Winders:

chaos and we're gonna discuss chaos here.

Tim Winders:

We've, we've got enough of that going on.

Tim Winders:

But that is, I like that model because I love the foundation, because it

Tim Winders:

bothers me sometimes what I see people that are using the name Christian

Tim Winders:

doing out there, because what it's doing is driving people away from

Tim Winders:

having those, what I call the eternal conversations that we want to be having.

Tim Winders:

We should be drawing people in with what you're talking about.

Gary Harpst:

However Well, Gary, one more thing before you move on the,

Gary Harpst:

you said something very significant about the first two layers, increase

Gary Harpst:

the effectiveness of doing the third.

Gary Harpst:

And this is, this is a pointed hard conversation to say to

Gary Harpst:

young CEOs or leaders of.

Gary Harpst:

Businesses that are stewarding them for the Lord, that when you run, when

Gary Harpst:

you don't know what you're doing and don't run a business well, it affects

Gary Harpst:

your ability to build the kingdom.

Gary Harpst:

You know, it's, it's not, you can't just operate at the third layer.

Gary Harpst:

You have to put the nuts on the bolts.

Gary Harpst:

If you, if you're going to build.

Gary Harpst:

Cars, you better build quality cars.

Gary Harpst:

If you're, you know, you've got to have an organization where you hire people

Gary Harpst:

and train them and hold them accountable.

Gary Harpst:

All those skills you think, well, that's business stuff.

Gary Harpst:

Well, no, it's not business stuff.

Gary Harpst:

It's life stuff.

Gary Harpst:

And if you don't do that, right, you don't earn the right to share the gospel.

Gary Harpst:

You know, and then that's what I would say.

Gary Harpst:

You, you mentioned earlier, this divide between churches saying they're all

Gary Harpst:

spiritual and in no business, and then business is all business and no spiritual.

Gary Harpst:

The truth is they need the competency of each other.

Gary Harpst:

Many churches.

Gary Harpst:

Are so heavenly minded.

Gary Harpst:

There are no earthly good, you know, so you've heard that phrase before.

Gary Harpst:

And, and many businesses are so business minded that they don't care for people.

Gary Harpst:

So you could tell I got on my soapbox there a little

Tim Winders:

bit.

Tim Winders:

So no, I love that.

Tim Winders:

And, again, I want us to get to discussing this, but it, it, I will

Tim Winders:

often one of my routines in the morning that I've loved doing the

Tim Winders:

last two or three years is listening.

Tim Winders:

To the Sermon on the Mount from Matthew 5 through 7.

Tim Winders:

It's about 15 minutes.

Tim Winders:

It's a great quiet time.

Tim Winders:

And it's different than reading it, Gary.

Tim Winders:

I don't know what it is, but I mean, I, I listen in and the last sentence

Tim Winders:

in Matthew 7, I don't have the exact verse, but as it's wrapping up, it said,

Tim Winders:

and, and the crowds were amazed because he was one who spoke with authority,

Tim Winders:

not like their scribes and teachers.

Tim Winders:

And so what you just described was, was somewhat, because we, we do

Tim Winders:

need to be quote unquote successful and good stewards with our people.

Tim Winders:

We need to show love.

Tim Winders:

We need to do those things where commanded.

Tim Winders:

Otherwise, we don't have the authority.

Tim Winders:

To what I believe, and you know, to talk to people about this,

Tim Winders:

we become the hypocrites, and that's not what we want to do.

Tim Winders:

And so very, very, very good.

Tim Winders:

All right.

Tim Winders:

So let's, let's, let's move into the, the big topic here that, that drew me to you.

Tim Winders:

Truthfully, it was, it was beating chaos because most people that are

Tim Winders:

listening in, which is very odd.

Tim Winders:

There's a dichotomy here too, that we may discuss, but, but let me

Tim Winders:

just, first of all, set the stage.

Tim Winders:

You're addressing, you're talking about beating chaos and how as

Tim Winders:

leaders and people in business, we, we are equipped to do it.

Tim Winders:

We can do it.

Tim Winders:

And there's, there's a lot of things there, but, but first of

Tim Winders:

all, set the stage, talk about, are we really living in chaos?

Tim Winders:

Because my wife and I were discussing this the other day and we were just

Tim Winders:

talking about how chaotic the world is.

Tim Winders:

But yet we're sitting here in our motor coach, we're comfortable,

Tim Winders:

we're peaceful, we've got food, etc.

Tim Winders:

so I guess first of all define chaos and where are we at in this and then maybe you

Tim Winders:

could go into why do we need to beat it?

Tim Winders:

Sure.

Gary Harpst:

there, we, I think it's helpful to think

Gary Harpst:

of chaos in three categories.

Gary Harpst:

One is the insurance policy disclaimer for earthquakes and, tsunamis, those

Gary Harpst:

sorts of things that we label as acts of God and we can't attribute it

Gary Harpst:

to it caused by humankind directly.

Gary Harpst:

That's one.

Gary Harpst:

The second is the chaos that is among us, between us.

Gary Harpst:

husband and wife, children and spouse.

Gary Harpst:

Parents, neighbors, nations, you name it.

Gary Harpst:

I had a sociology teacher in college ask this profound question.

Gary Harpst:

He said, why is it that humanity has progressed so far technologically

Gary Harpst:

and not at all sociologically?

Gary Harpst:

And I never really had thought about the fact that we had made no

Gary Harpst:

progress sociologically and that was, that class was 40 some years ago.

Gary Harpst:

and, the evidence is.

Gary Harpst:

Still true.

Gary Harpst:

I mean, we've killed more people in the last hundred years than we Did in thousand

Gary Harpst:

years prior to that because we have better technology to do it with and So

Gary Harpst:

the the chaos among us has not diminished and we've not really gotten any better

Gary Harpst:

at managing the third type of chaos is the chaos within within us and The, the

Gary Harpst:

chaos within us is a result of, in, in the top, or in the story of the flood,

Gary Harpst:

God reveals something about our design.

Gary Harpst:

It's very subtle and it's only in one sentence.

Gary Harpst:

He said, God's standing here as the designer of this creation and

Gary Harpst:

saying, you know, I'm looking, he's looking over his design.

Gary Harpst:

He says, you know, this thing's not working very well.

Gary Harpst:

He says the, in one sentence, he says, the intentions.

Gary Harpst:

Of the thoughts of their heart is only evil always one sentence, but

Gary Harpst:

he did tell us something about us.

Gary Harpst:

He said, we have intentions, thoughts, produce intentions, and our

Gary Harpst:

heart is what drives our thinking.

Gary Harpst:

And so he, he really laid out a four part architecture for, how he designed

Gary Harpst:

humans, heart, mind, which is reason.

Gary Harpst:

Heart is desire.

Gary Harpst:

Mind is reason and reason is supposed to filter our desires and rechannel them.

Gary Harpst:

Oh, that's a good idea.

Gary Harpst:

Nope, that's not a good idea.

Gary Harpst:

So heart or desire, reason, and then intention is actually the point at

Gary Harpst:

which you have formed an idea of what you want to do, that the reasoning

Gary Harpst:

is, Oh, you think about a lot of options and you finally say, yep,

Gary Harpst:

that's the one I'm going to marry, then your action is I go ask her.

Gary Harpst:

And, so those four states, well, internal chaos is when there's

Gary Harpst:

not alignment among those.

Gary Harpst:

Internal chaos is I want this thing, I don't have the skill to deliver it.

Gary Harpst:

And so what I do, I get mad, I get angry.

Gary Harpst:

And so internal chaos is, very deeply, it's the deeper cause of chaos among us.

Gary Harpst:

You see what I mean?

Gary Harpst:

And the early stories in the Bible, the very first one that's very pronounced,

Gary Harpst:

you know, in Genesis, God says he created us to have dominion or to rule.

Gary Harpst:

In other words, we are designed to have the ability to To bring order

Gary Harpst:

out of chaos to, to make things, create things, whether it's cooking

Gary Harpst:

a meal or, painting a picture, he said, we're designed to do that.

Gary Harpst:

But the very first example where he gets explicit that it's not

Gary Harpst:

happening is with Cain and Abel and Cain begins to feel this inner chaos.

Gary Harpst:

He feels like God's not, he's loving his brother more than he does him

Gary Harpst:

and he's beginning to feel jealous.

Gary Harpst:

So his desire and his actions are all getting all jumbled up.

Gary Harpst:

Inside of it.

Gary Harpst:

And it's, it's going to boil up into murder.

Gary Harpst:

So this is, this is how significant this internal chaos is.

Gary Harpst:

And God says to Cain before he killed his brother, he says, you know, sin

Gary Harpst:

or evil is crouching at the door and it's seeking to possess you.

Gary Harpst:

And he said, you must master it.

Gary Harpst:

And the word for master is very similar to the word in Genesis where

Gary Harpst:

God says he created us to overcome.

Gary Harpst:

So that's a long answer to your question about what chaos is,

Gary Harpst:

but it's a deep, deep topic.

Gary Harpst:

And, what, what most people miss in scripture is God in about the

Gary Harpst:

24th or 5th verse of Genesis.

Gary Harpst:

He says, he's talking to himself.

Gary Harpst:

It's a way, amazing way it's worded.

Gary Harpst:

He says, you know, let us.

Gary Harpst:

Create man in my image and do the, and let him have dominion

Gary Harpst:

and rule and he has to multiply.

Gary Harpst:

There's a lot wrapped into about two sentences.

Gary Harpst:

Well, if you stop and ask, okay, we're made in God's image.

Gary Harpst:

What do we know about God at that moment in time?

Gary Harpst:

And all we know is the previous 25 verses.

Gary Harpst:

That's all that's recorded in Genesis.

Gary Harpst:

And so ask yourself, go back and read those verses and see what you

Gary Harpst:

can learn about God, because he just told us we're made in his image.

Gary Harpst:

And one thing I like to ask people is what's the very first thing God created.

Gary Harpst:

And most people will say.

Gary Harpst:

Light if they if they're familiar with their Bible, but if you read it, that's

Gary Harpst:

not what he created first What he created first was chaos He says in the beginning

Gary Harpst:

God created the heavens and the earth and they were void and without Form that's a

Gary Harpst:

that's a definition of chaos And he took the trouble to say that the very first

Gary Harpst:

thing he created was a form of chaos Chaos itself is not evil God created it.

Gary Harpst:

But what did he do with the chaos?

Gary Harpst:

He then began to bring order out of it in six stages.

Gary Harpst:

He separated the light from the dark, the land from the sea, the Guy from

Gary Harpst:

the ground, he brought order out of that chaos one step at a time.

Gary Harpst:

And then he said, you are created in my image to do the very same thing.

Gary Harpst:

And, Satan lies to us and tries to rob us.

Gary Harpst:

Of the understanding that we're all created to do this, and I

Gary Harpst:

use my grandmother as an example.

Gary Harpst:

She would create these feasts for Thanksgiving.

Gary Harpst:

That's bringing order out of chaos.

Gary Harpst:

You know, she'd go to the cupboard and pick all these things.

Gary Harpst:

And, I mean, there's so many things in the cupboard and she'd pick a few and turn

Gary Harpst:

them into a recipe and make something.

Gary Harpst:

Well, the stuff on the wall looks like chaos, but what the meal is

Gary Harpst:

order and, you notice you don't have order until you have a recipe.

Gary Harpst:

Otherwise, it's just a bunch of stuff in the cupboard.

Gary Harpst:

And so purpose is what God uses to bring order out of chaos.

Gary Harpst:

His intent was to create mankind, and that's how come he brought

Gary Harpst:

order out of the chaos he did, to create a place for mankind to live.

Tim Winders:

Long answer.

Tim Winders:

Why is it, Gary, that some of us, I don't think it's everyone, I've

Tim Winders:

actually been around a few what I would call leaders that seem to thrive

Tim Winders:

off chaos and they create it if it doesn't exist and it is their style.

Tim Winders:

I don't like that.

Tim Winders:

I mean, we even have some political leaders right now that

Tim Winders:

that might be their, their style.

Tim Winders:

I don't want to go down that path.

Tim Winders:

I think you and I, I think I read somewhere that you consider

Tim Winders:

yourself a problem solver.

Tim Winders:

I consider myself, I mean, we're both engineers and, you know, we

Tim Winders:

see something, we want to fix it.

Tim Winders:

We see something that's out of order.

Tim Winders:

We want to create order from it.

Tim Winders:

And, and I will often say it's my desire, and this is maybe looking at

Tim Winders:

it from a negative, it's my desire to have some control and it's my

Tim Winders:

desire to possibly be a mini God, be a mini, you know, I want to control

Tim Winders:

my world, my, my realm that I've got.

Tim Winders:

And I think in many ways that's good.

Tim Winders:

And sometimes it's not good, but talk about how, especially as leaders, a

Tim Winders:

lot of people that are business people, entrepreneurs, they're that problem

Tim Winders:

solver like you and I are, why is it that they want to control and how

Tim Winders:

does that relate to this, this, this chaos topic that you're teaching and.

Tim Winders:

Well, just take that and run with it briefly.

Tim Winders:

I'm also watching our time because we're getting a little pressed here.

Tim Winders:

But, you know, we may need a couple of two or three more hours to really unpack this.

Gary Harpst:

Well, I think the root of your question is, is very

Gary Harpst:

helpful to think about if you're a leader, what is the role of a leader?

Gary Harpst:

Why?

Gary Harpst:

And one of the, one of the things that scripture would suggest is a

Gary Harpst:

leader is somebody who understands the relationship between desire and reason.

Gary Harpst:

And imagination and action.

Gary Harpst:

And so when you've got somebody that's upset in front of you, there, it's always

Gary Harpst:

related to a hundred percent of the time that a desire they have is not being

Gary Harpst:

fulfilled now, the desire could be wrong.

Gary Harpst:

They could be running, wanting something they shouldn't want.

Gary Harpst:

Or they could want something that's right, but they don't know how to get it.

Gary Harpst:

But it's the gap between desire and what you're getting that creates anger.

Gary Harpst:

Now, if you say, well, why, you know, why is, why are we like that?

Gary Harpst:

Well, God created us to have dominion.

Gary Harpst:

You know, you, as an engineer, a design specification when he created human

Gary Harpst:

beings was, I'm going to make a creature.

Gary Harpst:

That is hungry to have dominion.

Gary Harpst:

And so that's why we're that way.

Gary Harpst:

I mean, we, it's a good, it's good news, bad news, but he

Gary Harpst:

designed us to have dominion.

Gary Harpst:

So he put this fire in us to solve problems and to, to rule and to have

Gary Harpst:

power and all of those things that.

Gary Harpst:

We see in the behavior of others where things got built into us, but

Gary Harpst:

there's a big, but he intended for us to use those things and bring

Gary Harpst:

them in alignment with his purposes.

Gary Harpst:

And when our purposes, when we take that capability, that's built

Gary Harpst:

into us and run wild with it.

Gary Harpst:

In our own desires.

Gary Harpst:

In other words, I'm the ruler instead of God, then it turns into chaos.

Gary Harpst:

And, I think as, as, leaders, you will do much better when you see anger or in

Gary Harpst:

an employee or bad behavior to realize that's a symptom of something else and

Gary Harpst:

a good leader, whether it's with your children, your spouse or whatever,

Gary Harpst:

will quit reacting to the symptom.

Gary Harpst:

Quit, you know, my wife says something to me sharp, my

Gary Harpst:

inclination is to sharpen back.

Gary Harpst:

And the reality is there was something behind that and if I can just have

Gary Harpst:

the presence of mind to take a deep breath and say, look, I know her, I

Gary Harpst:

know she wouldn't want to hurt me, uncover what it is that's there.

Gary Harpst:

And sometimes she doesn't want to talk about it.

Gary Harpst:

Sometimes she's not even aware of it, what's causing it.

Gary Harpst:

But if we love people and care about them, we'll get, we'll realize

Gary Harpst:

that our actions are a byproduct of our desire and our reason.

Gary Harpst:

And that's where the problem lies.

Gary Harpst:

And you know, the Old Testament says our, our hearts are broken.

Gary Harpst:

There's something wrong in our genetics with.

Gary Harpst:

We desire wrong things, and that's what the gospel is all

Gary Harpst:

about, giving us a new heart.

Tim Winders:

Yeah, correcting those things that were wrong.

Tim Winders:

It's interesting as you were saying that, I was thinking about times in my

Tim Winders:

life and people, leaders, as a coach, I work with people that they will, I

Tim Winders:

guess they're good at stepping into chaotic situations and order out of them.

Tim Winders:

And then there's also people that are good at maintaining order and not

Tim Winders:

allowing things to get chaotic again.

Tim Winders:

And sometimes those are two different skill sets.

Tim Winders:

Is there a difference between them?

Tim Winders:

I mean, what do you see as the contrast between those two?

Gary Harpst:

Yeah, I do think there's a big difference in it.

Gary Harpst:

You know, some people are good at bringing about the change.

Gary Harpst:

In other words, they can visualize something that should be different

Gary Harpst:

and they create some chaos.

Gary Harpst:

Hey, you don't ever advance without creating some chaos.

Gary Harpst:

And so those people can be chaos creators and, they tend to be high Ds and there's

Gary Harpst:

about 15 percent of the population that's in that chaos initiators.

Gary Harpst:

But what, you know, it's interesting, that, there's a chapter in my book on

Gary Harpst:

this topic that it, that it takes more energy to maintain, maintain something

Gary Harpst:

we've created than it did to create it.

Gary Harpst:

And you know, it's easy to, to, conceive a baby.

Gary Harpst:

It's not easy to raise a baby.

Gary Harpst:

It's, you know, you build our house, we built our house in the woods

Gary Harpst:

here 40 years ago, 30 years ago.

Gary Harpst:

I've spent more now on keeping it up than I did when I originally built it.

Gary Harpst:

Roofing it, painting it, landscaping it.

Gary Harpst:

And to your point, some people are initiators.

Gary Harpst:

They're good at bringing about the change, but they're awful at maintaining it.

Gary Harpst:

And others are good at maintaining the status quo, but they

Gary Harpst:

don't want any change, but we need, we all need each other.

Tim Winders:

I've learned about myself, especially younger in life that I was

Tim Winders:

pretty good at going into situations that needed to establish some order.

Tim Winders:

And then I would lose the patience with that long haul that it took

Tim Winders:

to keep it and I would generally want to move to Something else.

Tim Winders:

And that's not uncommon, uncommon.

Tim Winders:

I'm just like you.

Tim Winders:

It's not uncommon, right?

Tim Winders:

Yeah.

Tim Winders:

Hey, Gary, the, the book built to beat Chaos.

Tim Winders:

I've actually got it on my, I've got it on my Kindle here.

Tim Winders:

I like the cover.

Tim Winders:

I like that.

Tim Winders:

I like that.

Tim Winders:

That's a very chaotic drawing there.

Tim Winders:

Biblical wisdom for leading yourself.

Tim Winders:

What is the thing that you want to accomplish or that you really want to

Tim Winders:

get out to the world with this book?

Gary Harpst:

I hope that people will have an aha moment to realize that

Gary Harpst:

God has called them to bring order out of chaos and not be its victim.

Gary Harpst:

And if you feel like you're a victim, It's because you haven't yet really

Gary Harpst:

clarified what your purpose is.

Gary Harpst:

Because if I, if I look at the world, like, like the, if I walk into a

Gary Harpst:

kitchen or a, and I don't have a recipe, I don't know where to start.

Gary Harpst:

I'm just completely lost.

Gary Harpst:

And that's, God has made this rich set of resources, billions of people and minds

Gary Harpst:

and all the tree, everything's so rich.

Gary Harpst:

But if you don't have some purpose, that richness overwhelms you.

Gary Harpst:

So that's my message.

Gary Harpst:

we're, we're meant to be victors, not victims.

Gary Harpst:

And, but it's rooted in making sure you've got a purpose that is right.

Tim Winders:

I enjoyed because there's, there's like three things.

Tim Winders:

That you bring together and maybe you and I speak similar language.

Tim Winders:

So I'm definitely attracted to definitely heavy on scripture.

Tim Winders:

You don't back away from any scripture at all, which is, which is great.

Tim Winders:

And you also obviously practical business and interaction skills,

Tim Winders:

but then also you bring in some.

Tim Winders:

Pretty heavy, I'll call it physics, science, and other things like that.

Tim Winders:

I mean, I'm reading some things here going, Gary just went over my

Tim Winders:

head a little bit here and I was like going, that bothers me some.

Tim Winders:

so who would you, who would you define the book is for?

Tim Winders:

Give me a good, I mean, I know we want everybody when we write

Tim Winders:

books because there's value there, but just give me a good profile.

Tim Winders:

And then we've got a few things we're going to finish up here with.

Gary Harpst:

Well, the book is for that, that senior leader who wants

Gary Harpst:

to get serious about integrating their faith and their business.

Gary Harpst:

And Hey, I'm the book is just as much about business as it is faith, because you

Gary Harpst:

cannot care for people if you can't run a good business and we try to separate them.

Gary Harpst:

You cannot separate them.

Gary Harpst:

Doing quality work, building a product is spiritual.

Gary Harpst:

Yeah.

Tim Winders:

I think the thing I love.

Tim Winders:

I think, I think the love is that you brought you, you are, you know, we're

Tim Winders:

trying to bring that kingdom of God into this business world and you're doing

Tim Winders:

everything I can see a great job of it.

Tim Winders:

And with all the things you're doing, Gary, why don't you hear, we'll include

Tim Winders:

it down in the notes, but tell everybody where they could get resources, where

Tim Winders:

they can connect you with the lead first or the book or anything else, anything

Tim Winders:

else you want to share that people that might want to connect with you and go into

Tim Winders:

all these deep conversations that we've.

Gary Harpst:

Yeah, we certainly go to the website because all

Gary Harpst:

of our resources are there.

Gary Harpst:

Leadfirst.

Gary Harpst:

ai is the, qualifier on the lead on the website.

Gary Harpst:

There's some of my personal writings and there's a newsletter if you're.

Gary Harpst:

If you want to hear more about these sort of thoughts of the intersection

Gary Harpst:

of faith and business, because I write something every week and have, have

Gary Harpst:

a video every week, those kinds of things, we have a platform to, it's not

Gary Harpst:

for everybody, but for, for business who wants to figure out how to cope

Gary Harpst:

with the growth and giving people good performance reviews and training them and.

Gary Harpst:

Keeping track of goals, all that plumbing that it takes

Gary Harpst:

to manage a growing business.

Gary Harpst:

we have some tools for that too.

Tim Winders:

Very good.

Tim Winders:

Gary, I appreciate all that.

Tim Winders:

And I've been checking out a good bit of that here over the last few days as

Tim Winders:

I've been researching and I, I love.

Tim Winders:

The language you're speaking and the message that you're getting out there.

Tim Winders:

I really appreciate it, Gary.

Tim Winders:

We are seek, go create those three words.

Tim Winders:

My final question for you, I'm going to let you pick one of those

Tim Winders:

words or force you to pick one of those words might be a better way.

Tim Winders:

Pick one of those words that just means more to you resonates, whatever currently.

Tim Winders:

And why?

Gary Harpst:

Yeah.

Gary Harpst:

Create is the one that comes to mind.

Gary Harpst:

We are create Ted.

Gary Harpst:

And we were created to create.

Gary Harpst:

And so I love that word, create involves purpose.

Gary Harpst:

You've got to know what you're trying to create, but you have to have

Gary Harpst:

skills to do it, wisdom and knowledge.

Gary Harpst:

So create is a very rich encapsulation of what God, intended when he created us.

Tim Winders:

Very good, Gary, thank you for this conversation.

Tim Winders:

Boy, I loved it.

Tim Winders:

Make sure you pick up the book built to beat chaos.

Tim Winders:

If you've been listening in, we'll have some links down there and

Tim Winders:

just check out all that he's doing.

Tim Winders:

I think it will be a, it'll be a blessing to use to those folks

Tim Winders:

that are attempting to bring this business world and the kingdom of

Tim Winders:

God together in, in, in whatever.

Tim Winders:

Whatever you're doing.

Tim Winders:

We're SeekGoCreate.

Tim Winders:

We release new episodes every Monday.

Tim Winders:

If you'd like to support what we're doing here, you can go to a website and do

Tim Winders:

financially support us or write us a note.

Tim Winders:

Just go to SeekGoCreate.

Tim Winders:

com forward slash support.

Tim Winders:

And you find all the information there.

Tim Winders:

Until next time, continue being all that you were created to be.