Leadership Reflections

Over the course of a year we can learn so many things. There have been ups, there have been downs, and all along the way you have gathered to yourself things to help you navigate life. I’m not the kind of person that likes to drift. I want to take control of how I learn, how I live, and where I’m going. I don’t like leaving stuff up to chance.

If you’ve never been a person who spends time contemplating or reflecting it’s a really great practice to put into your life. I most definitely recommend doing it every single year usually at the end of the year, sometimes at the beginning of the year. More recently, I’ve been adding in reflection times throughout the year.

In 2018 I found four main things that I had learned in leadership:

1. Last year was particularly tough because I was tasked with moving a ministry forward in my church. Anyone who knows anything about making changes in his ministry ought to know that when we say ministry we mean people, and most people resist change. The lesson that I learned through this is, in leadership, you can do your best to love and provide support but you need to know as the leader that if they make it and they thrive, it wasn’t you. You also need to know that if they fail, it also wasn’t you. People have to do the work on their own. Don’t get stuck in pride or guilt. Dragging people uphill is hard. What it boils down to is that old saying, “You can lead a horse to water but you can’t make them drink.” They have to do it.

2. I am a pretty self-aware person. I know that I have to keep close watch on my own heart. It is very easy in leadership to slide into bitterness, discouragement, and anger when things don’t go the way that you expect. We have to take responsibility for our own hearts. It starts on the inside of you. You either take responsibility and win or you blame others and lose. That’s the truth every time. We have to learn to rise above.

3. There is a Bible verse that says in Hebrews 3: 14-15 but we have come to share in Christ, if indeed we hold our original confidence firm to the end. As it is said, “Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion. There’s only one way to be faithful to what God has asked of us and that is through listening and being obedient.

Listen + obey = faithful

Being faithful in leadership is tough because faithfulness is a fruit which means, to grow it, you have to keep your eyes on the goal, stop up your ears from the things that will distract, and do exactly what God told you to regardless of the consequences.

4. Honor is not a word that we hear in our culture very often. When we honor someone it means that we put them ahead of ourselves. Honor is a prerequisite to unity. Honor brings an agreement between two people, a harmony that releases unity. It’s kind of like knitting the other person to yourself in relationships with friends, family, and colleagues. It is a oneness in Christ. The unity that comes from honor is the power of God expressed for His glory. Honor is not about being able to do whatever you want to do in leadership. It is our honor to think of all the other person or persons to whom what you do will impact and move for their good and God’s glory!

I hope you will take some time to do your own reflecting!

Thanks for listening,

Starla Smith

Thank you for sharing your thoughts with me.

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