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Leadership: What Is It?

WHAT DOES IT LOOK LIKE TO BE A CHURCH LEADER?

Leadership is All About People Movement

Sometimes they may leave them geographically, directing them from one line to another or from one classroom to another or from one street to another but in most cases the way that leaders move people is not so much geographically but rather developmentally. In any case, if you’re in leadership, you had better be prepared to get people moving!

The challenging issue of leadership is that we are not only leaving individuals but in most cases were leading a group of individuals in a common direction. With your leading a small team or the leading a large organization there is always a bit of tension between the macro leadership in the micro leadership. The tension between these two leadership polls is the tension between quality and quantity. A large group of people that form an organization can all be led developmentally as relates to the goals of the organization. Ultimately the fruitfulness of that organization is to one extent or another determined by the fulfillment that each individual member is experiencing. This requires a good leader that only has a vision for the organization but it isn’t for the individual as well.

Leaders Produce a Healthy Family

As a father of seven children there was often tension between how we conduct ourselves as a family and how each individual wants to conduct themselves. From the outset, we had a set of values that governed our family and yet each individual was able to comply with those values to one extent or another dependent upon their personality and their ability to embrace our corporate values. This is exacerbated by the fact that there are dimensions of diversity that exists with every family member and with each member of an organization. Each individual has a different history and a different divine wiring or divine design.

In addition to this, every person has a different IQ and educational ability. There’s different learning styles and different ways of processing information than truth. Also everyone has a different character and maturity level of different things that they need to learn. In addition that everyone has a different capacity to draw on others for mentoring and support and an resource we add up all these variables of individuality not to mention the different branches this gifting leadership of individuals becomes very challenging and complex.

As a father I needed to learn each of my children. We had three girls and four boys and they were each so different from one another. So they are different in their make up there also different in their ages. Three-year-olds don’t have the same capacity as a seven-year-old or 12-year-old.

Leaders Recognize The Level of Maturity of Their Team And Respond

Now that I’m on the verge of empty nesting my relationship with each of my children has changed dramatically. I am no longer leading them in the same way that I led them throughout their lives. Up to five years old I led them in a certain way, with lots of love and lots of boundaries. As they moved into adolescence I began to relax the boundaries to some extent. To develop, my children needed more liberty to make their own decisions, and possibly, their own mistakes. Now that they are all adults, I continue to be their father, that will never change. However, I no longer relate to them in an arbitrary manner. I now relate to them without the “training-wheels” that parents often apply to their children, but in the influence of a wise mentor.

As leaders, we’re called upon to provide guidance on the pathway that God has provide for each individual. At the same time it is our heart to join all these individuals together — we’re very diverse from one another but if we can unite all of the complementary gifts of the organization that each individual brings, we’ll enter a new level of synergy. This is the tension between individual leadership and organizational leadership. I do not believe that the goals and vision of the organization are to be held hostage by the needs of a single individual, and yet at the same time, the success and well-being of the organization depends on the well-being of each individual.

The ideal balance between organizational and individual leadership is when both are thriving. That’s when a leader achieves maximum momentum.

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