Monthly Archives: October 2010

Predictability…

I find it amazing the credibility given individuals who predict the weather. Based on the information available, they put forth their best attempt to predict the unpredictable.

The idea of predictability involves someone or something behaving or occurring in a way that is expected. Few areas of life are really predictable.

People are far from predictable.

The economy is unpredictable.

Clearly, we cannot predict the political direction of the world.

In reality, even life itself is unpredictable.

Predictability is incredibly difficult in spiritual leadership as well. Perhaps it is because of the unpredictability of all of the above.

Spiritual leadership must provide a predictable stability for followers. In an ever-changing physical world, people should be able to expect spiritual leaders to offer guidance consistent to an unchanging truth.

As unpredictable as Tuesday’s election appears and regardless of the outcome, I pray spiritual leaders will provide the predictability needed.

Indecisive…

Indecision is a decision. It is a decision to do nothing.

Why do we have such a struggle with making decisions? Where do we want to eat? What do we want to wear? Why is it so difficult?

What causes indecisions? Fear of failure? Rejection? Indifference? Apathy?

Do we allow indecision to become an avenue for manipulating others?

Spiritual leaders cannot allow the mindset of indecision to exist. The result can be devastating.

When we are indecisive… non-leaders make the decisions; circumstances make the decisions; dissenters make the decisions.

In the end, we accomplish nothing.

Leadership will not be perfect, but we must be decisive. If we make the wrong decision, admit it and correct it. But, please be decisive.

R-E-S-P-E-C-T

Coined in Aretha Franklin’s timeless classic, the idea is we all need just a little respect.

The discussion is interesting. Is respect given or earned? Should our respect be for a position and not a person (if we disagree with them)? How is respect lost… or gained? Should we respect everyone?

Respect in spiritual leadership needs serious consideration.

Is it one’s character or agenda that determines respect?

Is it being created in the image of God or one’s achievements that demands respect?

On what basis do we determine who should or should not receive our respect, and do we have this Biblical right?

Regardless of our religious, political or social agenda, Christ is clear about the manner in which we are to treat others. If we want others to show us respect, then we must show respect… first.

I pray we are always careful about our words and our actions. Both should be respectful, because of the influence we have as spiritual leaders.

It’s About Time!

We have all heard the idea presented, generally, when someone arrives late. Well, it’s about time you arrived.

However, think about this statement in a different light. It really is about… time.

How are we using our time as leaders?

In Paul’s letter to the Ephesians he emphasizes the need for us to “make the most of our time, because the days are evil.”

It is about time for us to step up and lead as God needs and demands.

It is also about using our time in a manner to fulfill the leadership needed for the home, community, government, and the Lord’s church.

When we really think about it more seriously, it’s about time!

Starting Or Finishing?

Several years ago, I heard someone say “it’s not how you start, but how you finish that makes the difference.”

Although I cannot remember the source, the significance is not lessened.

The concept is true in every area of life. It is true in sports. It is true in teaching. It is true in family, and it is true in leadership.

I have seen ideas that started with great excitement, but too quickly. The project began without much thought to potential problems. In the end what started well, finished a disaster.

I have also seen ideas start slowly, without as much excitement or momentum. However, the projects were well thought out and methodically approached. The problems were anticipated and resolved. In the end what started slowly, finished as a great success.

We need to approach leadership the same way. Leadership must be thoughtfully and methodically approached. Leadership must have the vision to anticipate problems and prepare to deal with them. If we start this way, how we finish will truly make a difference.

Why?

As our children were growing up, at the usual age, they began to ask, why?

I want you to brush your teeth. Why? It’s time for you to go to bed. Why? You need a good night’s sleep. Why? You have school tomorrow and you need to be alert. Why? Finally, in frustration, I would exclaim, because I said so!

Yet, this simple, one word question, is powerful in considering the decisions we make as spiritual leaders.

Why? Give it some thought.

Distractions?

What is it about distractions? “You’ve got mail” or a bell indicating another e-mail is in the box is all it takes.

When the vibration of our cell-phone goes off during a meeting, do we have to look?

Have we ever taken our eyes off the road while trying to text or read a text?

Do we look at someone or something passing by when we are engaged in conversation?

Is it hard to listen during a television program?

What is it that stops us from the task we are focused on to look another way? Why are we so easily distracted?

Spiritual leadership suffers when we are distracted. We have the vision before us. We have communicated the vision to others. The goals have been established. The plans have been activated, and then… we are distracted. Did the problem cause the distraction, or did the distraction cause the problem?

Did we take our eyes off the goal, even for a moment?

We can avoid distractions when we determine our goal, devote our emotional energy to the plan, dedicate our time and talent to the work, and act diligently.