Wednesday, July 14, 2010
As a pastor I am expected to be a leader. The problem with leadership is that it can either be good or bad. an article in Leadership magazine indicated that pastors are often bad leaders, especially when it comes to modeling humility.
The Barna Group research probed what we pastors do in response to our frustrations and disappointments. They asked “Think back to the last time you felt disappointed or frustrated with people in your congregation. What did you do-if anything-to address the challenges you faced?’ The pastors could mention anything that came to mind. Here are the top ten responses:
Prayed about the issue (37%)
Confronted the issue immediately (34%)
Had someone on ministry team/board/staff deal with the issue (15%)
Looked for Scripture to address, solve the problem (14%)
Sound counsel from someone I trusted (10%)
Talked with the person (9%)
Confronted the issue eventually (9%)
Addressed it from the pulpit/in a sermon (4%)
Had a council/board meeting (2%)
Self-examination (2%) Leadership, Spring 2010, p.72
Sadly the survey found that only 2% took the time to examine themselves. I’m not sure what to say or to do about that. Paul told the Corinthians that the very first thing they should do is examine themselves, 1 Corinthians 11:28. As painful as it may be let me suggest something. The next time you are frustrated or face disappointment with people ask yourself what could you have done different, said different, or even felt different that might have helped in the situation.
Jim Collins, suggests that superb leaders don’t look out the widow to blame others. They look in a mirror to take ownership when things don’t go well. They look out a window to praise others when things do go well. Whether you are a pastor, a parent, or whatever, the challenge is to examine ourselves, to look in the mirror and when we see something we don’t like examine ourselves first, before we judge others. Jesus said, to “first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother's eye.” Matthew 7:5. That’s love!