We were sitting in the church chairs at the front of the sanctuary during a pastor’s conference swapping stories about what we faced in pastoral ministry. That is when a friend of mine told me a story I have not forgotten. He was traveling up a mountain road and was stuck behind a cattle truck, one of the cows let fly and covered his wind shield in well, fertilizer.
“Crap,” he prayed, “God why me?”
“Because you were following too close much like you do with your team, back up enough to coach and not be blinded by the stuff that happens” God replied.
The encounter changed his approach to leadership – he moved from micro managing (stage managing) his team to holding them accountable for their roles while trusting and mentoring their decision making processes.
It is amazing what happens when leaders hold their teams to account for outcomes and then mentor them along the way pushing decisions back to them when they attempt to slide out rather than retaking delegated authority and then resenting the fact all the work lands on the leader’s shoulders.
Equip the people sitting in your church chairs to be responsible for the outcomes their talents, relationships and spiritual gifts readily produce when they simply walk in who they are in Christ.
Dr. Ray Wheeler is the Director of Global sales for Bertolini Inc and an adjunct instructor in leadership, church growth and ethics at Bethesda University California in Anaheim, California and Azusa Pacific University in Azusa, California.