2/10/10

Kathi Lipp: Bold, Intentional Choices

I met Kathi Lipp—a fun, intelligent, motivating woman—at a CLASS (Christian Leaders and Speakers Seminars) Marketing Boot Camp. I wondered what kind of choices Kathi made in her life that prepared her to influence others.

She came from a family that attended a church where the Gospel wasn’t part of the teaching; but when Kathi visited a friend’s church and heard the message of Jesus’ love and forgiveness—and that He could be a part of her everyday life in a relationship—her faith became real.

Dawn: How did your choice to receive Christ change your life, Kathi?
Kathi: I knew that God didn’t just see me as one of millions, but that He cared about the choices I made—not as a judgment, but because He wanted me to experience full life in Him.

Dawn: Following your decision for Christ, what choice blessed you the most? What was your most rewarding choice?
Kathi: Becoming a short-term missionary in Japan. I loved the work, but it was lonely, and it was the first time I realized that God was enough for me. Knowing that freed me to make some bold choices—leaving my parents’ style of church, talking to friends about my faith, and more.

Dawn: We’ve all made bad or foolish choices. Are than any that you regret?
Kathi: My first marriage ended in divorce after 13 years. While I don’t regret the decision—I really had gotten to a place where I had done everything I could with God’s direction to save the marriage—I grieve over the loss for my kids. There’s a reason God hates divorce; it hurts those involved and the kids. That is why I strive to be so intentional in my marriage now.

Dawn: What hard decision do you now see was a turning point in your ministry?
Kathi: When Roger and I were engaged to be married, I started looking for a job in San Jose, where my kids and I would soon be moving. After picking me up from a retreat where I was the speaker, Roger heard from the women what an incredible weekend we had experienced. Roger told me, “I really think we need to give this writing and speaking thing a go.” So we prayed about it and decided to go full time into ministry. We didn’t have the money to do that, but we felt God really confirming the idea. We are so glad that we didn’t take the safe route.

Dawn: In your book, The Marriage Project, you write about putting the fun back in marriage. What are the two most powerful choices you recommend that couples make to put the zing back into their marriages?
Kathi: Number one is dating. It is so easy to set time and money aside for dating before we get married, but once the wedding takes place, it is harder to make each other a priority. Dating in marriage makes the partner a priority. I understand finances are tight, but I really believe couples can date on a dime. In fact, we offer lots of ideas on my blog.*
Number two is speaking to each other with respect.
It makes me so uncomfortable to overhear couples speaking sarcastically to each other. It is a bad habit we can fall into without even being aware of it. It costs nothing to speak well to each other.

Dawn: How do you think your own marriage choices have shaped your marriage?
Kathi: The watchword for my marriage has had to be “intentional.” It would be easier to live our marriage by default instead of design, but we really do make a point to date, make time for each other, and speak well of each other.
Dawn: So, you take your own good advice!

Dawn: I know you have also written a book titled The Husband Project, as well as many articles for national magazines. If you knew the results would be positive, Kathi, what adventurous “no fear” choice would you make in the days ahead?
Kathi: I'd write a memoir. It scares me to be as vulnerable as a good memoir can be, but I am really toying with the idea.
Dawn: I’m sure that it would be full of humor and biblical insight, Kathi, because you are fun and wise. Thank you for sharing some of your choices with us.

* Readers, Kathi has great free resources, including "20 Dates for Less than $20," on her website.

1 comment:

Marja said...

Thank you Dawn and Kathi for a great interview. Blessings to you both!