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I have a beautiful wife, an infant son & a schnauzer. viva la tex-mex. Words that describe or excite: Missional, Glocal, Lead, Innovate, Initiate, Create, Risk, Community

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Welcome to Leadership: Your Monkey Butt is Showing!

I have a friend who has recently taken on a volunteer leadership role at church and sadly after barely over a month on the job has been facing a harsh and brutal spirit of criticism from a few people. They are playing the "take-our-ball-and-go-home" game. And with some editing for anonymity I thought I would share it on my blog for all of those of us in ministry and/or in leadership that need encouragement in times of criticism.

Recently I attended a conference where one of the speakers said something that I needed to be reminded of. The thought was good and true. It resonated with my soul at that moment so much that I wrote it down and sent out a Tweet immediately. You may or may not have seen it so I wanted to share it with you now.

"Leadership is a commitment to be misunderstood."
It is true but yet it is one of those truths that even when you believe it, it is not necessarily a comfort. But what you can take comfort in is that God has given you a vision and if it is His vision then you can stick to it and rest in that alone...

...I am saying even if you are frustrated, misunderstood, and on and on, just don't give up. Remain above reproach and then the detractors have nothing valid to say. They will either come around and get on board or they won't but leadership is not about making everyone happy and giving into every opinion.

The speaker went on to say a couple of other things too:
On Criticism--if it's true = respond and change
--if it's not true = don't stoop to consider it

He also quoted this African proverb:
The higher the monkey climbs up a tree,

the more people that can see his (hiney).

I am not sure what that means but I think it means in leadership people are gonna take aim at your backside, or they can see your flaws or weaknesses. Something along those lines. I think that is just to remind us that sometimes people only take time to see the negative and those people will always be detractors unless they change their perspective. [Especially if they are not climbing with you, as a leader you need people climbing with you, but also realize some will only go so high. If your vision calls you to climb higher, others will always be left behind.]

Psalm 42:5 "Why are you downcast, O my soul? And why are you disquieted within me? Hope in God, for I shall yet praise Him for the help of His countenance."

II Timothy 1:13 "Hold fast the form of sound words, which you have heard of me, in faith and love which is in Christ Jesus."

So all that to say, welcome to leadership.
Hope in God, and HOLD FAST.


1 comment:

Clifford said...

Saw you on SCL and think the blog name is brilliant - I see now the blog itself is brilliant. Maybe everyone should take the "Moses Test" before going into a leadership role - if they don't put up *any* kind of resistance before accepting the role, let 'em reapply.