“The following blog post is an excerpt from a new book by Errol Lawson called “The 5 Core Abilities of Highly Effective Leaders”. Errol is a business coach, best selling author and youth pastor. The book is written primarily for the Christian community but readers from all beliefs can gain great insights from his writings.”
PRINCIPLE #4: RESILIENCE
One mistake that driven, ambitious leaders often make is mistaking a course correction for a failure. We have a concrete, precise idea of exactly how we want our careers and ministries to turn out, and we do our very best to make that idea a reality. It’s why we’re effective leaders in the first place! However, this mentality can damage us greatly as well. Sometimes, when we feel like we’ve gone off track, we begin to let go, thinking we have failed.
Often the course correction comes from God Himself, as a response to our pride or undue ambition. “I came into a church with all the solutions to all the problems in the world,” Mike recalled of his early days in ministry. “I was the next Billy Graham! I came here to cut my teeth on the place and figure out who I was, and then I’d get invited to a bigger church. That was in my head.” But over the next two years, Mike began to sense that maybe God was calling him to remain in his current position.
“Love the LORD, all you faithful followers of his! The LORD protects those who have integrity, but he pays back in full the one who acts arrogantly. Be strong and confident, all you who wait on the LORD!”
At a ministry conference, that sensation sharpened into a message that was impossible to ignore. “I can remember in the vision that I saw that day the altar of Elijah,” he shared, “and on it I saw selfish ambition. I can remember saying, ‘That’s just nonsensical!’ but the moment I tried to move I heard the Holy Spirit say very clearly: ‘Stay where you are. You need to deal with this.’ It just smashed me,” Mike recalled. “I ended up in a real snotty mess, but probably in the best state I’ve ever been in my spiritual life. Have a nervous breakdown — I recommend it!” In that moment, Mike needed a serious course correction. He needed to reposition his motives and attitude in order to best move forward.
Sometimes, however, these course corrections come as a result of out-side circumstances. At one point, Mike’s church lost a large number of members because of some changes that he had put into place. “Satan played mind games with me,” he said. “When those people left my church, all I could hear was, ‘You’re the wrong person, you’ve blown it, there’s someone better than you out there.’ All those voices coming in began to cripple me because I wasn’t convinced that I was the right person—which was ridiculous, because I came here
because I knew God had called me!”
I am able to do all things through Him who strengthens me.
When you’re discouraged about changing courses, then take some time to remind yourself of why you’re passionate about this vision in the first place. Revisit the scriptures that stuck with you when you first received your call. Speak again with the mentors and friends who encouraged you to pursue your vision, and pour out your questions to God. And above all? “Be confident in Christ,” Mike advised. “Knowing that He’s with me
and has called me here helps me to bulldoze through those obstacles. I know I’m the right man. I can succeed, I can fail, but the reality is this:I am the right person in this place.”
To review, here are some of the key concepts that we’ve reviewed in this chapter:
- Anchor yourself to Godly promises, values, and objectives
- Be patient and trust in God’s power when plans slow down
- Don’t confuse a course correction with a mistake
For the full text, get your copy of The 5 core Abilities of Highly Effective Leaders. It’s now available on Amazon https://goo.gl/biwfmh