It is outstanding, amazing, and confusing what passes for empowerment these days. Politicians are empowered by their constituents but fail to act on their platforms or with integrity. Sports figures are empowered to compete with everything in their power but often slack off in training while weakening themselves with extended exploitation of their bodies. Corporate managers are empowered to bring the best out of those within their span of control and more often than not end up using the same individuals to fulfill a personal need, abandoning the purpose of the group and any individual development along the way.
Part of the challenge involved with empowerment is that people do not actually believe they are empowered. Politicians believe they are only as good as the next opinion pool. Sports figures often confuse empowerment with a license for gratification on every front. Corporate managers confuse empowerment with a permission to selfishly achieve their advancement at the cost of everything in and around their souls.
What would happen if we were really empowered? Occasionally people are and in those circumstances I find that several things happen. First, people identify and relate to others that are similarly empowered. Second, things happen! Third, the people who are empowered treat others with respond and honor. The latter happens for two reasons. First, it is easier to respect others when you respect yourself. Second, people quickly discover that teams always accomplish more than the sum of the individuals. Third, its fun! Being empowered is fun, empowering others is fun, and being an empowered team is a party in the making.
Imagine a world where you acted with the same empowerment that Jesus had. In Jesus’ case “the Father loves the Son and includes him in everything he is doing. But you haven't seen the half of it yet,” (John 5.20) the offer of inclusion extends to you and me today! We are empowered. We are in on everything. We have been in this spot for a long time. Everything now hinges on our realization. Do we know the gift and our charge?