reposted from http://wcagls.blogspot.com
I receive several sailing magazines each month pertaining to sailboat racing. Sailing has been a recreational passion of mine for a long time. Recently I read an issue that had six articles on how to how to win races. I counted up all of the recommendations from each article about how to win sailboat races. There were 35 recommendations. Unfortunately, a list that long doesn’t help me because it’s just too overwhelming. I would like someone to say, here are four recommendations that are super important and if you do these, you’ll vastly improve.
Sometimes the same kind of thought process happens to me when I think about leadership. When I read Michael Feiner’s book on the 50 facets of leadership I thought, “50, wow—that’s a little intimidating”. John Maxwell did the 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership and sold millions of copies. Thank God he whittled the list from 50 down to 21. Jack Welch wrote Winning, and he boils the list of 21 down to eight basics. But that had to be hard just boiling it down to eight.
And so, in a bold moment, I’m going to share four leadership points that are on my ‘must do’ list for church leaders. As I interact with pastors around the world, I often am asked questions about the facets of leadership. If I had to say—above all things—do these four recommendations when you get back to your church, I think the points below make the highest impact.
1. Keep the vision clear. Proverbs 29:18 says—without a vision the people perish. Great leaders attend to every single detail with regard to a vision talk. When a vision lands in the hearts of people in the church, people start soaring in their spirits because there’s a vision in the church worth investing in, praying for, giving toward.
2. Get people engaged. Nehemiah 4:6 says—and all the people worked with all their hearts. Imagine that for a moment, every single person you’re leading working with all his or her heart. What we have to understand here is the difference between someone who passively agrees to an exciting vision and someone who buys in and has an owning stake in that vision.
3. Make your gatherings memorable. Another way of saying it, create great church services. Work so hard to make your gatherings memorable that your people wouldn’t think of missing them. Acts 2:43 says—everyone kept feeling a sense of awe. Awe as in holy transcendent moments where the awareness of the presence of God is palpable.
4. Pace yourself for the long haul. The key verse here is 1 Corinthians 9:25—Run in such a way as to win the prize. I’d like to finish the race with a family that loves to be together, and with friends that I can belly laugh with, and still stand in front of Jesus who finished His race (and had the toughest assignment of all).
Leaders, we need you. The local church is the hope of the world, and its future rests primarily in the hands of its leaders. We can’t lose a single one of you from your race. So I plead with you, pace yourself for the long haul. I pray that through our leadership and the leadership of others the church will reach her full potential in this world.