“You know, I may be wrong”

An off-target arrow

Used with permission.

As a blogger, I spout my opinions frequently and strongly. I think I’m right, but you know, at times I may be wrong and hit wide of the mark, or at least my suggestions may not be universally applicable.

In Sunday School today we watched a sermon by Andy Stanley on “Big Faith“, the first in a series on five ways that God works to build our faith. In the introduction he says something like, “I may be wrong of course. Maybe there are six ways, or a completely different list of five, or perhaps God works another way entirely, so this is just an observation of five ways it appears to me that God works.”

As you and I both know, there is no one single way to lead. There is no single formulaic five step process to successful leadership. There are all sorts of ways one can lead, and which way you choose may be highly dependent on circumstances, your nature, and a whole bunch of other factors.

My caveat

This blog is a series of reflections on how to provide Christian leadership. I’ve made some strong statements and I know I say ‘should‘ quite a lot. That sounds pretty directive! Since I write based on my experience, my circumstances, my personality and so on, I think my suggestions will work well for me, but will they for you? You must decide that for yourself. My goal is to get you thinking and provide you with some help along the way by sharing the very best information I can find or think of about Christian leadership. I am sure my thoughts have widespread application (or I wouldn’t bother writing), but in the end they are just observations. They are my contribution to Christian ministry written in response to the question I assume readers are asking: “I wonder what a Christian leader who has time to think and write about leadership issues thinks about leading in a Christian way?”

Your caveat

You as a leader are in a similar position. You have your opinions about issues facing your ministry’s leadership and as a leader you should be sharing them. We lead from our convictions knowing that people want to have confidence in their leaders, but that means that we tend to lead with a high degree of certainty. Let’s not be more certain about things than we have a right to be. In many cases, there is more than one way to “skin the cat.” (What an awful expression, but it expresses the thought perfectly.) This is why it is best to lead with consensus decisions, or decisions that you make but which have been shaped by group discussion.

In closing

  • Knowing that I could be wrong, or that there is more than one way to lead, is why I allow comments on this blog. I want you to participate with me and my readers in a group discussion so we can all learn together.
  • Knowing that you could be wrong or that there is more than one way to address whatever issues face you, is why you have a team to consult with and to help you lead. Two heads are better than one and all that!

Leaders are not required to have all the answers, but to know how to develop a good answer and to make a decision.

Plans fail for lack of counsel,
   but with many advisers they succeed.
Proverbs 15:22

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