The Bateman Family

Batemans in Argentina

Shawn Bateman, Misionary to Argentina

July 29, 2017 

“Plus-Minus-Equal: “

Lessons from a MMA Fighter

“Plus-Minus-Equal: Lessons from a MMA Fighter “

While listening to the audio book “Ego is the Enemy” I learned that Frank Shamrock, a MMA fighter from Warner Robbins, Georgia, has a method of training others. This method is the one mentioned above, Plus-Minus-Equal. The idea behind this formula is as follows:

Plus-You need someone better than you, someone who has “been there and done that” to help you, and instruct you. A mentor, for example. Something to consider about this, Steph Curry has a shooting coach, Tiger Woods has a swing coach, and, though world olympians are at the top of their field, guess who is standing on the sidelines watching their every move? Yup, their coach.

Applied to the ministry-Joshua had Moses, Elisha had Elijah, and the disciples had Jesus. We need someone to help us navigate the choppy waters of life. Even a pastor needs a pastor. Researchers build upon the work of the scientists who came before them. The same is true for us; we can learn from the experiences of others, and be directed by their counsel. Minus-This is someone you can help teach. Speaking from personal experience having worked at UPS, when I moved into management and had to train people for the job, my own understanding of our job and work methods grew. Applied to the ministry-You may feel like you don’t have anything to offer but there is someone out there who is behind you. Offer your help and advice. I believe that this is one thing that is lacking in the lives of so many Christians. They go to church and hear the message, they go to Sunday school and hear the lesson, but they never relay what they have heard to others. They are always receiving and never giving. There came a time in Timothy’s life where Paul told him in 2 Timothy 2:2 “And the things that thou hast heard of me among many witnesses, the same commit thou to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also.” It wasn’t supposed to stop with Timothy; he was to pass on what he had heard from Paul to others, and the things that he had committed to others, they were to pass it on as well.

Applied to the ministry-Joshua had Moses, Elisha had Elijah, and the disciples had Jesus. We need someone to help us navigate the choppy waters of life. Even a pastor needs a pastor. Researchers build upon the work of the scientists who came before them. The same is true for us; we can learn from the experiences of others, and be directed by their counsel. Minus-This is someone you can help teach. Speaking from personal experience having worked at UPS, when I moved into management and had to train people for the job, my own understanding of our job and work methods grew. Applied to the ministry-You may feel like you don’t have anything to offer but there is someone out there who is behind you.

Offer your help and advice. I believe that this is one thing that is lacking in the lives of so many Christians. They go to church and hear the message, they go to Sunday school and hear the lesson, but they never relay what they have heard to others. They are always receiving and never giving. There came a time in Timothy’s life where Paul told him in 2 Timothy 2:2 “And the things that thou hast heard of me among many witnesses, the same commit thou to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also.” It wasn’t supposed to stop with Timothy; he was to pass on what he had heard from Paul to others, and the things that he had committed to others, they were to pass it on as well.

Equal-You need someone to challenge you. Someone that is close to your equal, that will push you, and whom you can push. There is nothing like a little good ole-fashioned competition. When at UPS there was always an unspoken competition, the performance of others always pushed me to do better in my work area as well.

Applied to the ministry-It helps me to talk to my friends and see what they are doing. Through them sharing their ideas and me sharing mine, we are able to help improve each other’s ministry, motivate each other to do more, and encourage one another. “Iron sharpens iron.” Paul also used the example of the giving of the churches of Macedonia to challenge the believers in Corinth to give. The writer of Hebrews says that we are to provoke each other to love and good works.

The idea of “the equal” is not to see who can “one up” the other, rather it is the idea that we do better with others. When exercising I’m always motivated to run longer when I’m running with someone else. Who is missing in your life?

Do you have a plus, minus, and an equal?

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