As leaders we are supposed to have the answers. Right? But the world is ever changing and this leaves us feeling off balance. Uncertain.
It takes courage and skill to step out and move into the unknown. We would like to offer five adaptive skills you need to practice in 2018 to lead in this ever changing world. We’ll dissect one each week.
You have plenty of “successes” notched on your leadership belt.
More recently you’ve become acquainted with “it’s not working like it used to work,” and you’ve leveraged additional leadership. You have:
- Focused clearer,
- Rallied the troops louder,
- Tried harder.
In an earlier era you’d have been the one calling it the definition of insanity. Now, for those of us who care about the Church and God’s mission to seek and to save the lost, it’s a prerequisite for stepping into unfamiliar terrain.
And, once we’ve “tried harder” and offered one more shiny “quick fix” to our congregation’s greatest challenges, we’re ready for the much greater task of adapting to a world that’s foreign to most of us.
And, we desperately need leaders like you and congregations like yours willing to lead and press into the unfamiliar domain of church in a missionary world.
Adaptive leadership is guiding your congregation to adapt to a world that didn’t exist a few short years ago.
How ironic that being the answer woman or the man with the solutions or the leader with the promising new program just might render you poorly prepared for today’s adaptive challenge.
Capacity to be an adaptive leader begins with a humble spirit.
It’s Ezekiel: I don’t know if these bones can live; God, what do you think?
It’s the 72: Empty pockets. Sent as lambs. Alert to where God might be at work.
It’s Daniel asking his brothers: Plead to God for mercy to crack the mystery of Nebuchadnezzar’s dream.
The prerequisite need in a well-formed character of an adaptive leader is humility! A humble spirit that attaches itself to the mastery of necessary, new skills for today.
A humble spirit that can ask, “God, what might you be saying to me?” And then couples itself to the faith to act.
However, leaders don’t come by a spirit of humility naturally. It’s compromised by the sinful condition.
This type of humility gets forged when leaders:
- Embrace the unfamiliar,
- Lean outside the margins of our comfort,
- Shake hands with failure and disappointment,
- Smile in the face of risk.
And refuse to surrender!
We see lots of leadership surrendering these days because no one is walking alongside and encouraging young leaders or well-traveled leaders. We need to reminding leaders…
- You have worth. It’s not attached to position, performance or success. It was first conveyed in baptismal covenant.
- The fruit that might be harvested is worth it.
- I’ll stick with you.
It’s an exciting season…challenging to the core season…to be a leader. The Spirit of God goes before us. God’s mission will not fail.
Thanks for not surrendering.
PLI would welcome the opportunity to be the one to walk beside you in one of the new learning communities launching this year.