Leadership Design…

“A ship is safe in the harbor but that is not what it was designed to do.” Unknown

A question came to mind when I first read this quote: What is our leadership designed to do?

We are masters at remaining safe. We long to avoid the challenges, controversies, and confrontations that often accompany leadership.

No one is an advocate of seeking out any of these three, but they will be part of our leadership.

The answer to our question is simple. We were designed to lead. Too often I hear of situations where men are qualified to lead, but unwilling to step up and take the responsibility. Why? Because they feel safe where they are at.

The Lord’s church needs men who are willing to step up no matter how difficult the challenge, controversy, or confrontation.

One day we will stand before God and we do not want our ship still safely in the harbor. Our leadership was never designed for such. Rise up men of God and lead!

Our God has called us to the greatest task on earth.

Enduring Leadership…

To endure carries a depth of meaning on several levels. To endure also has a great deal of meaning from a Biblical standpoint. Not only are we commanded to endure, God also encourages us with the benefits that come eternally to those who endure.

From a leadership perspective, it can be challenging to endure. To endure literally involves bearing up under the load. It is far deeper than being patient.

While we are to be patient in all things, to endure takes us to a level that challenges our ability to hold on, and hold on longer than we can imagine.

A couple of thoughts might help us endure when the road presents these challenges.

One, remember the adage; “if God brings us to it, He will see us through it.”

Two, God will not allow us to be tempted beyond what we are able to bear (1 Co. 10:13).

Three, we must not forget, no matter how difficult, these challenges are only temporary.

With some perspective we can endure, especially when we know our God is in control.

Power of Prayer…

Prayer seems to be a given when it comes to spiritual leadership. We know about prayer. We study about prayer. We talk about prayer. We teach about prayer.

However, do we believe in the power of prayer?

Most people can attest to the number of times God answered prayers in powerful ways. We have seen Him answer in unexpected ways that went beyond our request.

We are thankful for the avenue of prayer and we desire the kind of faith that knows God will continue to answer our requests.

Perhaps the struggle we have deals with the temptation to doubt when various trials arise and challenge our faith in God’s power to answer…yet again.

When it comes to prayer, there is no magic formula, special words, proper position, or time of the day that makes a difference.

For Christians, prayer is about the simplicity of a humble heart that trusts God to answer in His time, in His ways, and in our best interest.

We may not always understand, but to pray without ceasing is the foundation to powerful leadership.

Timing Is Everything…

Timing is everything. How many times have we heard this statement or one similar? Yet, it is true on a number of levels.

When it comes to addressing a delicate situation, timing is everything.

When we are faced with making life changing decisions, timing is everything.

When waiting for answers to test results, timing is everything.

When confronting a family member, fellow worker or employee, timing is everything.

God said; “there is an appointed time for everything, and there is a time for every event under heaven.” When we read through the list provided in Ecclesiastes 3:2-8 we quickly learn how true it is that timing is everything.

The next time a delicate situation arises, when faced with a decision, when we await test results, or when we consider how to confront someone else, remember – timing is everything.

If we can step back and think for a moment and ask ourselves, “Is this the right time to continue in this direction?” maybe we can handle whatever life throws our way at the right time.

Seven Words…

While examining a few leadership websites, I came across an interesting statement, “The Seven Most Important Words In Leadership.”

The idea is part of Terry Starbucker’s e-book Leadership From A Glass Half-Full: The 5 Lessons You Need To Learn Before You Jump Into The Pool.

The phrase is simply this, “I don’t know and I’ll find out.”

The sad reality is we do not like the appearance of not knowing the answer. After all, we are the leader, right? Leaders are supposed to know all the answers.

Worse still is the attempt of too many of us who try to bluff our way through areas we know nothing about. Somehow we convince ourselves we can smooth talk our way through the discussion. Wrong!

The transparency of acknowledging we do not know something and the willingness to find the answer is critical to great leadership.

First, others already know we do not have all the information, plus they know when we are bluffing. Second, greater credibility and trust is established when we are are honest with others.

Learn these seven words and live by them.

Support Group…

Support groups are generally associated with some form of recovery. They exist for individuals recovering from addictions and their spouses. They exist for those who suffer grief in the loss of a loved one, or from divorce. They even exist for people who struggle with eating disorders.

Support groups exist for a number of reasons and they are beneficial to those who use them. At this point, a couple of questions should be considered for our leadership.

Who makes up the support group for leaders? Wisdom would suggest the potential of other leaders involved in a group. Put together a core group of others who will share and contribute to the group’s design.

What benefit will they provide? They serve as a reminder that others have and do experience the same challenges. They also establish a form of accountability.

A support system will make a difference in how we continue to grow and develop our leadership. Who makes up the group, the purpose of the group’s design, and what we apply to our own leadership is the determining factor to its success.

Specific Procedures…

Imagine a time, place, or organization that operates without a specific procedure to guide the direction of its purpose and outcome. Not only is it hard to imagine, we are more likely to realize a descriptive state of chaos.

By definition, a procedure involves a “particular course of action intended to achieve a result.” It also relates to a process connected to a “particular form of work.” Procedures may be loosely or dogmatically applied, but procedures provide a binding web that holds it all together.

From home to the work place, every area of life operates with some procedural form. Why are these procedures critical?

They tend to be constant. In an ever changing world, we all enjoy a measure of constancy.

Procedures remind us of the foundational basics that provide the backbone of security.

We also find a greater level of clarity through procedures.

Obviously, procedures vary from one organization to another, but spiritually speaking, we find God’s word as the foundation for the procedures necessary to achieve the constancy, security, and clarity needed for our lives now and eternally.