Let’s look at who leaders might be. As stated above, a leader is someone that guides other people. In reality the answer should be quite simple and obvious, however here are just a few examples of leaders. I will start with perhaps the most important person in one’s life, second only to God, parents. I believe as a nation we have missed the mark terribly when it comes to parenting. Just to be clear, I’m not saying all parents have missed the mark, just a good majority of them.
Perhaps the second most influential leader in one’s life is their pastor, priest, reverend, bishop, or any spiritual leader. Often times our spiritual leaders can have more influence over our lives than our parents. Thus, spiritual leaders are held to a higher standard than parents. As a pastor myself who ministers to broken people on a daily basis, I know this all too well. We are looked at through a very powerful microscope and the circle we must stay in is the size of a pin head, figuratively speaking. I know there are countless people in this world that have walked away from God and the church because of immoral and unethical leadership in the churches, I was one of them. Thank you, Jesus for your Fathers grace and never leaving nor forsaking me.
I would contend that teachers and coaches, starting in grade school going all the way through graduate school are very important leaders in one’s life. Other leaders include, grandparents, aunts, uncles, law enforcement, fireman, our mayors, governors, and president. I feel very strongly that the number one leader here on earth in one’s life are our parents. It is my belief that if we are taught to love ourselves and others, respect ourselves and others, have strong moral and ethical beliefs as well as values instilled in us as children, although we will make mistakes, then when we are faced with adversity we will not be influenced to make choices that go against our beliefs.
Let’s talk about the importance of vision. When it comes to the church it is important for the leader(s) to have a clear vision of what Gods is vision of the church. The leader must have a clear understanding of what that vision is in order to create an atmosphere of stability and purpose within his team while directing them. The same principle is true for all ministry leaders within the church as well as within any business.
Courageous leaders are a vital part of any organization, including churches and businesses, that are serious about disrupting the status quo and creating success. Even if the organizations environment and direction is unorganized, chaotic, uncertain, and complex. According to an article in Courageous Leaders by Mandy Holloway | May 17, 2016 | High Performance Culture, Leadership there are six types of courage: 1.) Physical Courage - This is the type of courage many of us think of first – it is the bravery when faced with the risk of bodily harm or death and involves developing physical strength, resiliency, and awareness. 2.) Social Courage - Social courage is about standing up tall, being able to greet the world with your head held high, feeling comfortable in your own skin. 3.) Moral Courage - Moral courage is about doing the right thing even at the risk of inconvenience, ridicule, retribution, loss of job or security or social status. 4.) Emotional Courage - This type of courage is about being open to feeling the full spectrum of emotional experience, both positive and negative. The most universal are happiness, sadness, anger, fear, and disgust. 5.) Intellectual Courage - Intellectual courage means being willing to grapple with difficult or confusing concepts, ask questions, struggle to gain understanding and risk making mistakes. 6.) Spiritual Courage - Spiritual courage means being available to the deepest questions about why we are here, what is my life for, do I have a purpose? Remember that courage is not the absence of fear, it is having the ability to move forward in the face of fear.
Good leaders are people of integrity. Why? People of integrity follow their moral and/or ethical convictions by doing the right thing in all circumstances, even if no one is watching you. Integrity means following your morals. Having integrity means you are true to yourself and would do nothing that demeans or dishonors you or others. One of my mentors had to say this about integrity; Integrity means you walk away from every conversation leaving the other persons integrity intact, no matter how much they have destroyed yours. I have learned that by following those words my side of the street stays clean. It protects against false allegations brought up against us by others. If we practice this principle in all our affairs even those around us can defend us, just by knowing our nature, even if they are not present. We must remember that at times there seems to be those around us who don’t want us to succeed or, even worse, want to watch our downfall. Psalm 25 reminds us that God provides a shield around us when we understand the value of integrity in all areas of our lives.
To be continued….