“Hang in there”… “Keeps going and going and going”… “Think different”… “The relentless pursuit of perfection”… “Just do it”… “When the going gets tough, the tough get going”… “Built tough”… slogans, inspirational mottoes, corporate creeds and even promises. And these represent just the tip of the “cliché” iceberg!
But, have you ever given any thought to exactly WHY clichés actually ARE “cliché”? In each familiar slogan, meme or uplifting quote lies a kernel of truth – OR the motivation we may need to leap that next hurdle. It honestly does help when a friend says: “I have faith in you… I know you can do it. After all, a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step!” Corny? You betcha! Over-used? MOST assuredly! Helpful? WITHOUT A DOUBT!
Sometimes we just need to see or hear the words. And, when they become a part of an organization’s public image, they also convey a mission, a sense of purpose, promises, core values. These words can inspire us, reorient our mindsets, allow us to embrace a new perspective… and, yes, give us HOPE!
These words represent so much more than just slogans or sayings. They represent the foundation upon which people and organizations actually build their lives and reputations. And here, at King’s Ransom Foundation, we are no exception. Considering the scope and depth of our mission, recently our Board of Directors sat down to discuss putting OUR core values into words.
After all, even God put His intentions into words! “I also say to you that you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build My church; and the gates of Hades will not overpower it.” (Matthew 16:18) The Bible is more than just “stories”… it’s an historical account and chock-full of His actual promises – to US! So taking His words and example as our “rock,” we created a four-prong foundation for our, well, Foundation:
- Radical Love: Let’s start with the first block upon which we continue to build our foundation. We hear “radical” used in a variety of ways: “That was totally radical!”… “His moves were so rad!”… “Ignore her, she’s just a radical nut-job!” However, the dictionary primarily defines the word radical as “relating to or affecting the fundamental nature of something; far-reaching or thorough (especially of change or action).” Pair that with the complete meaning of love, and now you’ve really got something! It’s not just about love – it’s about RE-defining how we “practice” love daily.
- Relentless Generosity: Okay, we “get” generosity. Sharing, maybe when we honestly don’t have extra; giving “until it hurts” (yep, another one of those clichés); putting others first. But what about that whole “relentless” thing? Let’s face it, if you’ve EVER spent any time with a child – especially one who wants something – then you have some insight into the idea of relentless! No “Not now” can stop them. They have set their sights on an objective and absolutely NOTHING will deter them. We’re not talking about a “passing” interest or thought; we’re talking about an overwhelming obsession… and that’s what we strive to achieve every day at King’s Ransom Foundation.
- Authentic Compassion: Anyone who has ever “collected” anything, understands the importance of authenticity. It may look like a signed Hank Aaron baseball… but can you prove it’s his signature? We need that certificate to guarantee it’s authentic. Compassion works the same way. We can say we’re “compassionate” but without the evidence to actually support that claim, the words fail to ring true. We don’t want to “just talk the talk” we aim to ALWAYS “walk the walk!”
- Courageous Action: And, without this final key, the other values wouldn’t carry much weight. But consider the importance of these two words TOGETHER. We all take “action” every day… some positive, some negative (as was the case with those hot, “Fresh Now” donuts this morning). But it was action, nonetheless. However, we also know sometimes doing the right thing takes honest-to-gosh COURAGE. The easiest choice frequently does not intersect with the right choice. It’s EASY to say “Do the right thing” but a whole other kettle of fish to find the COURAGE to actually do it! Whether in the face of danger, hardship or obstacles, above all else we want to demonstrate courageousness in EVERY choice or action.
Now, let’s take a look at another one of those clichés: “Actions speak louder than words.” Yep, you just knew THAT one was coming! So while words carry REAL power, without the appropriate actions they can either ring hollow OR provide a complete disconnect for their desired audience… and we realize this. We also know we cannot do this alone. We need you to not only keep us accountable for both our actions AND words, but to join us in embracing these core values for our work together at King’s Ransom Foundation! Working hand-in-hand with you – always connected through prayer – with radical love, relentless generosity, authentic compassion and courageous action, there is NOTHING we cannot accomplish with these ideals and YOU as our “rock!”