Dealing with the Unfortunate Reality of How to Plan: Play Rook?

Trying to plan for success with people can be compared to playing a card game. When the cards are distributed by a dealer the “hand” you receive is what it is. From that point on if you are in the game to win, you end up dealing with the “unfortunate reality” of turning a bad hand into a good one.

Dealing out the above reality in a card analogy is not for the purpose to “flush” you out, nudging you to underestimate what I am going to say in this post. Sensitivity always exposes the self righteous “hands” that feel they are the most positive Christians in the world.
Unfortunately life can be unfair.

As a non-card-carrying-member of the SWRC Rook playing champions I want to see growth, harmony, and progress toward fulfilling our goal of reaching God’s Kingdom. The “unfortunate reality” at the “table” where we find ourselves, is the theology of the universality of sin that comes full circle in a miasma of diseased thinking, brought on by sin that declares that we are vulnerable humans—subject to failure especially in our human thinking.

Evil begins in the mind with the contradicting notion that it is good.
The “unfortunate reality” of planning sometimes becomes an exhibition game of how to get a winning set of cards. Planning for the future in an organization can be compared to a Rook game of, dealing ideas, self interest, theories, and inflated egos. And let’s face it a plan is only an “image” of the contributors who hold the cards. I mean, that it is an “unfortunate reality” that we cannot seem to “get” to where we want to “get” in a unified way with the best card players in the SWRC.

Remember, the one dealing the cards controls the distribution of the deck with fancy hand moves as he/she passes out the many possibilities. It is unfortunate that we will sit down and amen until we die, but before the bright light of life disappears we can only declare what Solomon said, “all is vanity.” The “unfortunate reality” of Adam’s sin dealt all humans a bad hand which makes us all capable of making bad decisions. Jeremiah declares that, “The heart is deceitful above all things, And desperately wicked; Who can know it?” (Jeremiah 37:9) Jeremiah’s “unfortunate reality” simply declares to all of us that we can listen to all the sermons and speeches from here to when Jesus comes and that won’t do it for us when asked the striking questions by the judge of the universe “What did you do to deserve to be in My Kingdom? Are you really righteous, holy, and loving? Our bad decisions will be judged by the One who comes and knows our hearts. Can the card players truthfully answer the above questions?

I believe that the piercing sword that proceeds from Christ’s mouth metaphorically demands a positive response concerning how we have planned and implemented our ministries in our churches across the southwestern field of five states (Card distribution). Unfortunately, we have planned, planned and planned and still statistically we have not even scraped the bottom of the bucket when it comes down to soul winning and meeting the lost where they are. Do we have a bad hand with cards we need to deal away?

Fortunately, I believe that it is not in the word, “planning”, but in the word, “how” we plan. I congratulate the chairperson of the Strategic Planning Committee for “ideas” out of which comes something to improve on. However, the new president remarked that what administration will do is put “legs” on it. I thought what he said was comically illustrated. To put legs on any plan takes some kind of strategic “thinking”. Could it be that the strategic “hand” that we received at the quadrennial session was a bad combination of cards that left the administration bewildered? Then, in a last minute crisis mode they tried to figure out how to distance administration from a “bad hand” with the hope sometime later in the future on a day of their choosing to revisit the plan that would yield better cards that would produce a winner? How in the world did we approve something that no one, if few has seen (Except a flyer)?

By the way, is our STRATEGIC IDEAS a six leg bug or an eight leg spider? Legs can determine species. What then should we call our strategic Plan—a bug or a spider? If it is a bug then it may be a pest. If it is a spider it could be poisonous. Unfortunately we are left with the dilemma of choosing whether we want a pest or something poisonous. Also, our leader may have to distinguish the type of “alien species” the creationist fashioned. It may be a species “after their image”.
The “unfortunate reality” maybe, that we have something that our leader correctly has recognized—a plan that doesn’t have legs and seems to be an unfortunate lifeless body of dazzling ink and paper. We basically were presented a flyer of “ideas” because not one constituent in the building at the time of the strategic plan presentation and vote (earlier voted down) received a final hard copy of the “entire” proposed winning hand. Yet every constituent in the meeting (team players) received a flyer to battle the worse outlaw in the universe—a plan without legs, dubbed at that evolving moment as an unknown species that can’t even crawl.

Maybe, in its evolving state and at the right moment in time, millions of years from now it will have legs and the unknown “Thing” will suddenly emerge from the lab of cryogenics to be called “Something”. The “unfortunate reality” might be that the plan, in its frozen state finds itself in a casket of pernicious theory.
Let me explain the heart of the “unfortunate reality” we have been dealt. You see, the creationist failed to address two crucial areas that would have given a lifeless evolving species some legs and the “breath” to live. If the “Thing” could speak you might hear it whisper, “If only I had legs, I could be somebody. I could walk and run. If only I had legs.” (Whispered over and over and over…)

What are these two crucial areas? The answer is found in the form of questions.
o What do I need to have for a successful execution?
o What are all the possible forces or events that could hinder or destroy it? (Army Handbook, 1973

The “unfortunate reality” appears that they left the legs off the body and didn’t breathe the breath of life into the “Thing” by not gathering as much as possible all the answers to the above questions (see the comments and articles written by Jonah77 for further elaboration). We have a lifeless body because the creationist did not listen carefully to the judgment of the people who are the team members. This fatal blunder prevented them from properly planning the positive forces and events, and the real vision to take action and prevent any obstructions that might hinder the plan.
The “unfortunate reality” of the hand we now possess of “ideas” the creationist missed—what a detailed plan normally includes; such as who, what, when, where, how, and why. This is why we don’t know whether we have a “bug” or a “spider”. Because there are “missing links” in their genetic engineering of the “Thing” and at this point we don’t know what “form” of the “Thing” will rise from the murky unknown of the abyss. It could be “Frankenstein” of sewn together body parts borrowed from other thrown away lifeless forms.

The “unfortunate reality” of the creationist’s lifeless, legless form could have been avoided if they had asked the right questions like: Who does it involve and who will do what? What are we going to do? What will happen if we do not do it? When does it start and end? Where will it take place? How will it take place? Why must we do it?
In Retrospect

Back to the table of card players, is where we now return. At the end of the day all the players will “fold” with the plan we presently have voted, since it was approved to settle emotions of sensitivity, peace and personalities. Maybe we will come up with a workable reality in a real plan that we can all win with.

By the way, there is no spiritual difference between playing Rook and a regular Poker game. They just changed the look on the cards and called it something else. The belief in this contradiction of association reveals why we have an unfinished plan of abstract ideas, because someone in the back room at the table couldn’t distinguish between Bid Whist and the kosher clone game called Rook. I think they ended up playing Poker. Through this working analogy you might see how we change the “concepts of the world” and conveniently rename them Christian. (FOR YOUR INFORMATION: The company developed the Rook deck because the face cards in standard decks were considered by some at the time to have occult symbolism, according to the book The Game Makers: The Story of Parker Brothers From Tiddledy Winks to Trivial Pursuit.
Rook was originally invented because of Protestant prohibition against playing cards. Playing cards were thought to be the work of the devil. Rook was developed and called “Christian cards”. Rook is currently most popular in the South.)

Rook is a trick-taking game, usually played with a specialized deck of cards. Sometimes referred to as “Christian cards” or “missionary poker”, Rook playing cards were introduced by Parker Brothers in 1906 to provide an alternative for those in the Puritan tradition or Mennonite culture who considered the face cards in a regular deck inappropriate because of their association with gambling and cartomancy.)

The Forgotten Shepherdess


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6 Responses to Dealing with the Unfortunate Reality of How to Plan: Play Rook?

  1. Rook Game says:

    Sometimes its tough to turn a really bad hand into a good one in rook 🙂

    Appreciated your thoughts and comparisons of game playing with reality.


    • THE FAN says:


      Thanks for those encouraging words. It is my desire that we will look at the plan or a future plan with some real maturity and professionalism, with real advanced members who know how to put such a plan together. NOT FRESHMAN!

      Next, I hope that our president will field test the plan in certain locations in the field as mentioned by Jonah77. (They need to seek Jonah77 out because he sounds like he knows something about these models that originated from the military.)

      Finally, I hope that we can seek out planners who have know self interest but to work on a good strategy. Before we praise people and clap our hand as they read something…let’s see if it works!


  2. Anonymous says:

    Your analogy of a card game if very thought provoking. You are pointing out some very serious viewpoints concerning the STRATEGIC PLAN. The strategic plan presented to membership of our conference is a creature without legs as was mention. Solomon state in Proverbs 6:6 “Go to the ant… consider her ways, and be wise.” Solomon used the ant under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit to remind us that the ant is a gather and a builder. If the strategic plan is going to be a success the leadership of our conference needs to gather the support of the pastors and membership with their skill, talent and experience to be successful. This is the first step. The next step is that of a builder. The conference leadership, pastors and memberships need to unite together as builders. As we build together, we work for the good of God’s kingdom and not out of selfish motives. In studying the behavior of the ant if you put and object in his way, he will go around it and continue forward to complete his work and contribution for the good of the colony. So if person, place or thing seems to block our way as a conference to achieving and building God’s kingdom, we will go around it and continue forward for the good of God’s kingdom.
    Since the plan has no legs on it, let it have the legs of the ant. Legs that know the God is in charge, God is in control and that all blessing and success that is achieved in our conference is from Him. The plan may have some short comings, if we keep God in it and change what He leads us to change and move forward, we have no fear.

    No Fear


    • GONE NUTS says:

      No Fear:

      When I read your comments like the one you just posted, it raises readers to a higher level of having more hope. Your ant analogy brings the above editorial to a hopeful eye opening perspective.

      Ideas on a sheet of paper are nothing. WE VOTED SOMETHING THAT WE HAD IN OUR HANDS AT THE SESSION THAT WAS NOT A STRAT PLAN. The complete plan is not yet finished. This is why it was not presented in toto. The constituents voted something out of an “emotional plea” from those who were on the excom and stratcom. And…it has not been field tested in sections of our conference.

      Next…basically what you have at the office is no more than incomplete goals and objectives of various departments that comprise an overall so called “plan” with out legs. There is nothing else on how we are going to finish the work as conference/churches and members. Nothing as one self described expert has said, “cutting edge.” The “Thing” at this moment in time is either a pest or poisoness.

      The pest might be an expenditure of 30,000.00 dollars in consulting fees for a Colonel of the U.S. army whose qualifications were nothing more than chaplain. He is/was not an expert on strat planning. Most likely, the chairperson of the stratcom will be voted back in with applause with ideas that took over 4 years that HAS NOT BEEN PRESENTED AS A FUNCTIONAL PLAN!

      Constituents have repeatedly asked for the entire so called strat plan and was promised that it would be posted before the constituency meeting but never placed on the conference’s website.

      I guess someone is stuck on stupid.

      God help us all


  3. dolomite9 says:

    If we vote a strategic plan that has no legs ,arms, feet, or head, what do we do with it?How do we implement it and how much will it cost?Who will bwnefit from it most?How will the costs be assessed?Who will oversee it and how will it be monitored?Are we actually getting what we wanted and asked for?


  4. dolomite9 says:

    Seems kind of messy no matter how you look at it but haste often makes waste!We voted it so now what are we to do with it?Even if we have the people with the skills and potential to make it happen, we need Jesus all the way.We need some serious healing and adjustments to happen before any strategic planning can take place!We need to be secure before we go around trying to fix somebody else or something else.This does not mean we sit around and do nothing while we wait to feel secure but it does mean that we focus on the main thing before we take on some new thing.Physician heal thyself!


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