Recently I was talking to a friend about some issues in a group we were a part of. We just weren’t seeing the progress that we hoped for among the women. We discussed at length what we wanted to see in the group. We talked about why it wasn’t happening and what needed to happen.
As women do, we analyzed the absolute snot out of the situation… Over coffee of course. 😉
The problems were obvious. And the solution was obvious. But actually accomplishing the solution wasn’t as easy.
Because the group won’t go where the leaders don’t lead them. And, in this case, the leaders were fundamentally unwilling to go where the group needed to go.
The truth is…
If you want your people to go deeper in worship…. you, the worship leader, must go first.
If you want your kids to use kind words, value others, and to serve, you must do all that first.
If you want people digging deeper into God’s word…. you better be over your head deep yourself.
The sheep will only go as far as the shepherd leads.
It’s easy to talk about, but not so easy to do. It takes being completely transparent. It takes bravery. It takes not caring that in your attempt to lead them you may fall on your face and look the fool. It takes being intentional. Being Brave. It takes being ready to be the MOST passionate, MOST sold out one in the room. Ready to go boldly first even when no one follows.
Now here’s the problem for me. I’m a girl and this doesn’t come naturally to me. Girls go to the bathroom together for goodness sake! Most of us don’t purposely try to stand out and look the fool.
But leadership requires that bravery. And not just bravado for bravado’s sake. But bravery for the purpose of leading others closer to Jesus. Deeper into the relationship we want them to have with him.
We need to free those we lead to be brave in their own walk with Christ by being the one who is brave first. We must be the example. The one who will stand out to them and show them the way. We have to be able to say ‘do what I am doing as I follow Christ.’
Still want to be a leader?
Sometimes I don’t. But God has called me to it. How do I know? Because I can’t stop. No matter how fed up I become, and how much I decide that I will never lead again, I find myself back in the place of leading women, planning events, and dreaming up new ideas to serve and inspire them. I can’t quit any more than I can quit breathing.
It’s in my blood to do it. In my soul. He has made me for this purpose and I never tire of it…. Ok, that’s not true. I do get tired of it. But never enough to quit.
Leaders…. we CANNOT expect that the women, children, youth that we lead will ever go where we want them to go if we are not unashamedly, loudly, transparently, doing it in front of them. They will NOT go where we do not lead.
So lead, my dear friend, because God has called you to it!
Go where you need go. Do what you need to do. And stop being afraid of failing or looking like a fool. (Kari Day, are you listening??) Stop worrying about what they will say or if you will be accepted in your boldness. Do what Jesus tells you to do. and do it well. pour yourself out to them. Pour yourself out FOR them.
There is a generation out there who are starving for us to be authentic in our relationship with Christ and allow our love for him and our relationship with him to be put on the stage for them to glean from. Let them glean.
Be brave my fellow leaders. lead them like no one else. Lead them not by telling them they should…. but by showing them how with your own life. Your own love.
The first thing is first. Our relationship, intimacy and the degree to which we are becoming like Christ is the #1 thing that we must prioritize. We can’t lead anywhere worth going without that.
Your turn…. Tell me, where is God leading you to be brave?
Kari Day is a woman passionately pursuing Jesus in her everyday life…stumbling and falling along the way. She is the co-founder of Allied Women, a community of women helping women to pursue God’s purpose for them. Kari is driven by a passion to see women change the world for Christ by living fully in the purpose he has created them to live. She blogs about living life intentionally and abiding in Jesus at KariDay.com and Allied-Women.com She lives in the Pacific Northwest with her husband, three kids, golden retriever and new kitten she recently rescued from under the house. You can connect with Kari on Facebook.