You think of leaders as people who should have it all together. You view them as stars, higher than us, and brighter than most. It's no secret as to why people will follow leaders. People view leaders as worthy to follow because they see things in them that they don't see in themselves.
Think of a person who leads you. Not a manager or a teacher, but someone who you voluntarily follow. I'm going to guess that you find great value in that person. Which leads me to believe that they must posses some sort of admirable quality.
Yet, I want you to understand this: You can be a leader. Not just any leader. You can become a great leader.
The perception is that leaders are born with the "it" factor, some mystical attribute that propels them to the ranks of leadership. I used to think leaders would ultimately find themselves at the top, followed by the rest of us, who weren't blessed with "it".
If you take a poll asking what kind of people others want running their company, church, or government, you would probably see that they want leaders with the competence to handle the responsibilities the position would demand. They would want to work "under" someone who is ahead of them in skill set, intelligence, experience, passion, and interpersonal communication. Wouldn't you want the similar traits in them?
What ever "it" is that you deem important in a leader, notice that aside from character traits, you can develop all of the above-mentioned skills. I want you to understand that you are not limited by your limitations. You are only limited by what you perceive to be your limit.
That means that in order to grow and develop those essential skills, you first have to believe you can become the leader you seek to be. If you don't believe that you can develop, then your bias will always come up with reasons (excuses) as to why you can't be a leader.
You won't invest the time and resources that it takes to become a great leader. You'll cave in to the mentality that you aren't cut out to lead.
I am here to tell you that you can do it. You have to think and believe that you can. That's the first step.
Before we get into developing you and challenging you to bring out your best, let's settle here for a second. What is causing you to question your abilities? What is killing your motivation for progress? Why are you reluctant to pursue personal development?
Every one of us is gifted in one way or another. I am not saying that you will become a leader like someone else. No.
I am saying you'll become the leader that only YOU can be. The one you were called to be. There are people around you who need you to step up, to stop playing scared, and to set the example. They are looking to you for inspiration and unless you don't find inspiration for yourself then you are robbing them (and yourself) of greatness, progress, positive change, etc.
The greatest leaders are good at developing more leaders. Why? Because they understand the process of growing because they most likely had to grow themselves. They had to trust that God would enable them to be of service to others.
When you look at church planters today, they normally try to recruit top talent and rightfully so. Without good talent it's hard to start because you have no momentum. So top talent can help with the initial push necessary to gain momentum.
Yet, when Jesus selected leaders, He didn't seek out the top talent of His day. He bypassed the kind of people who everyone else saw fit to lead and chose instead a band of nobodies, common folks, untrained men, some of which were social outcast, and imparted in them of Himself.
You would have thought that the Son of God would choose full-time clergymen or influential men. You would think that he would have chosen young guys with tons of potential. Nope. Not Jesus.
He chose fishermen and a tax collector. It is assumed that all the others were also blue-collar men. Had they been otherwise, they would have been rabbis (Jewish teachers) themselves.
For three years they followed Jesus. Yes, they messed up a lot, but they grew. Yes, they asked silly questions, but Jesus always had the right answer for them. They were being developed as they failed. They became more loyal as they witnessed the forgiving nature of Jesus. They understood the complexities of leadership and that you can only truly lead from a servant's position. They were challenged to believe for anything even as they lacked faith in themselves.
Jesus was molding these ordinary men into extraordinary leaders who became fearless and influential. They were like you and me.
These men later went on to change the world.
If Jesus could do it with them, He could also do it with you.
Are you willing to allow Jesus to grow you, mold you, and build you into a leader capable of changing your world?
If so, let me know you're ready. I'll be praying for you.
Accept the fact that no one really has the "it" factor unless it has been gracefully given through development and experiential learning. If anything, the "it" factor is your mindset.
Stay tuned for the next post. I'll go into how you will prepare yourself for the improvement that you are about to experience.
- Fredy Romero