John Maxwell: What Chair Do You Sit In?

Rustic chair image used for John Maxwell discussionLast week John Maxwell spoke in our weekend services with, for him, an unusual topic. He staged the platform with three chairs, and then proceeded to ask us what chair we sit in. The chairs represent our spiritual life.

  • Chair # 1 represents the level of commitment. Our lives are characterized by obedience, reading the word, prayer, reaching others.
  • Chair #2 represents compromise. We obey when it is convenient and fits our plans.
  • Chair #3 represents confusion. We no longer think first about God, if at all.

Here is the main point. Over time, there is a natural tendency to slide from chair 1 all the way to chair 3. You can see this in many areas of life:

Nations start out under Godly principles and move to an increasingly secular outlook.

Educational institutions begin as seminaries and end up as…Harvard, Yale etc.

Denominations begin in revival and become increasingly bureaucratical.

Sadly, this movement from chair to chair can also be found in the lifecycle of a church, the generational patterns of a family, and an individual life. Generation #1 knows God. Generation #2 knows about God and his works. Generation #3 knows nothing about God or his works. John gave some biblical examples (David – Solomon – Rehoboam, Abraham – Isaac – Jacob) and then gave us some key lessons learned from the chair.

  1. The Bible and history teach us that there is a tendency to slide downward with each succeeding generation.
  2. To know which chair you sit in is to know where you are spiritually.
  3. To know which chair you sit in is to know where your children will be spiritually.
  4. You can change chairs.
By Marla Saunders

I am passionately devoted to living my life in the places God has given me. Over the years those places have changed: from homeschooler to businesswoman, from consumer to storyteller. These days I'm focusing on building a new business and figuring out what it means to do everything with integrity and informed by faith.