As a grandparent I have grown to love Face Time. If you are unfamiliar with this technological advancement, it is simply a means of seeing people face to face electronically when you are talking to them. Perhaps you can see the benefit now.
The use of Face Time has some relevance and significance to leadership.
You must have a connection to use it. The internet connection is necessary to access Face Time. Are we connected to others who are following? Can we really see them and their needs?
The stronger the connection, the greater the ability to communicate. This one generally escapes leaders. The value of a strong connection to others enhances our ability to lead powerfully.
The connection is most effective when we can see others. I am not opposed to an electronic form of communication…obviously. I also understand the value of a phone call. However, I have experienced the best results when being able to see someone face to face.
There is something special about being able to lead face to face. Try a little Face Time and see if it makes a difference.
If we knew we only had one day to live, what would we do differently?
I realize the challenge of answering a hypothetical question, especially when considering the mindset of our culture. We tend to think we have years and years. The result causes us to procrastinate what is important…and urgent.
For the sake of the next few seconds, how would we answer the question?
Would we spend all our time on Facebook, surfing the internet, watching movies, worrying about what we are going to wear?
Would we be consumed with the appearance of our house?
Would we put off talking to a neighbor, coworker, friend, or relative about Jesus?
I am sure a number of thought provoking and convicting questions could be asked.
We do not know how many days we have left. While we may not “believe” it, intellectually we know the imminence of death.
As spiritual leaders we must regularly ask what we would do if we only had one day. If we know the answer to the question, then I pray we will prioritize our lives to act accordingly.
I am constantly amazed how much I get accomplished when I have a checklist. When I take time to write down all I must do for the day, I not only get it done more quickly, but more efficiently, and I feel I have accomplished something at the end of the day.
Spiritual leaders need to form a checklist of far more than daily activities.
The list needs to involve the who and what for those who are led.
Who we are leading is crucial to understanding how we are going to lead.
What needs to be accomplished will address areas concerning the needs, abilities, opportunities, responsibilities, and dreams of others.
Considering the who and what leads to another crucial question, and that is why?
Why we lead helps us see more clearly the direction we need to take, and design a plan to help reach the destination.
There will always be more to examine. However, when we take a few simple ideas and ask ourselves the right questions, the checklist will lead to greater efficiency and accomplishment for the Lord.
Have you ever considered the power behind two simple words, for life?
What does it mean when we accept a responsibility for life? Do we understand the value and intent behind a commitment for life?
I recently had opportunity to perform a wedding ceremony for two friends. It is exciting to see all the work that goes into making 25-30 minutes the most special half hour in the lives of two people.
As the vows were exchanged, the thought of the words for life took on a new significance.
There will be challenging days ahead, but they will be faced together because of these two words.
Family problems will arise, both within and without, but they will be met when for life is understood.
Difficulties with health will occur, but they will be overcome when faced for life.
Leadership is the same. Assuming we understand our influence on someone each day, we are going to lead. It must be for life.
It is an opportunity, not a chore. It is a privilege, not drudgery.
We can make a difference when we know it is for life.
“Leadership is a potent combination of strategy and character. But if you must be without one, be without the strategy.” Norman Schwarzkopf
This thought stands on its own. There is no doubt when it comes to the necessity of character. As well, leadership must also involve strategy. However, over the last few years I have grown to appreciate Schwarzkopf’s statement.
We have examined several areas about character in the past and I do not think it can be overstated. Character is the very substance of leadership.
The determination of character is the head of character.
The development of character is the heart of character.
The demonstration of character is the hands of character.
Where there is character, there is leadership! We need strategy, but strategy takes a distant second place to the necessity of character as leaders.
I find it quite easy to be negative. Whether it is age, circumstances of life, witnessing various elements / changes within the church, or any number of areas, I have too often allowed myself to become cynical.
This is WRONG!
How can I, or anyone else, in leadership allow the external situations surrounding us influence our efforts in making a positive change? The answer is simply, we cannot! We must not!
When we consider how God has empowered us with the ability to choose, and that he has provided redemption and freedom from the consequences of sin, how can we not live in Biblical joy.
We not only have a reason to live, but a reason to have joy in this life as we anticipate the coming of an eternal one.
Considering the information we have been given, our efforts as leaders must be to make a positive change. The external circumstances will always exist and challenge the core of leadership. However, we must arise above it and lead to make a positive change, beginning with me / us!
A recent acquaintance at the local gym made an interesting observation. In talking about our workout routines, he stated that when he was younger he lived by the idea “anything worth doing is worth overdoing.”
We both laughed, but later I began to think more deeply about this thought.
A fairly common term used when we work too much is the classic “workaholic.” We can easily get so wrapped up in ourselves and our work it consumes us and everything we do.
How do we prevent falling into this trap of obsessiveness as we travel through life?
We need balance. The task of balancing God, family, work, and any other activities can be most challenging. If we are not careful it is easy to become imbalanced and overdo one area above the other. Generally, we overdo work.
We need to evaluate priorities. Simply expressing an area of life as a priority does not make it so. We need to evaluate and live according to the proper priorities of God, family, work.
While there are other areas to consider, this is a beginning point to help us prevent overdoing in our leadership.