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Tragedies of Leadership

Tragedies occur when we fail to take on leadership responsibilities that we are clearly called to fulfil or when we pursue or demand leadership responsibilities without objectively and prayerfully examining our ability to lead. When either of these occur, people are hurt, resources are wasted, and good opportunities for growth are retarded.
- Bob Briner
(Source : Leadership Lessons of Jesus)

The challenge of course is knowing when the balance is right. It seems to me the reason many of us face this tragedy comes back to a single problem : we fail to place our inadequacies at the foot of the Cross. I have often shunned taking on full responsibility in one area because I have felt "not up to it". I have done so without sufficiently considering that God is able to enable me to fulfil that which he may be calling me to do. In those moments I forgot God's words to St Paul, "my strength is sufficient for you because my power is made perfect in your weakness". Equally I have taken on stuff not because God wanted me to do that particular task but because I felt it was my "job" to do it. Or I sought fulfilment in doing that particular job rather than focusing on whom I am working for - God himself. In short in both cases, it was about me and me.  

Both of these dangers are very real. How do we overcome them? The key of course is to keep focusing on Jesus and his objectives. Making Jesus first, and myself second. I am not my job. This is a hard thing to understand in a world where our identity is on things we do. We are fond of saying "I am an economist" rather than "I advise on economic policy". We say, "I am a pastor", rather than "I pastor". We say, "I am a teacher", rather than "I teach people". The title becomes our identity rather than focusing on what we are called to do. Our identity must more and more focus on who we are in Christ. I am Christ's and he is mine! My sufficiency is found in Him alone. 

At the practical level, it is important to have deep and lasting accountability with other people who understand our pressures. Such a person can challenge you and help you ensure that your heart is where God wants it and not where you want it. For such accountability to work, it requires honesty and a genuine desire to do God's will. Otherwise accountability can simply become an escape from accountability before God!

Question : How do you manage these two opposing dangers in your life? 

Copyright © Chola Mukanga 2013

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