Sunday, February 7, 2010

God as Supreme Situational Leader

While I wait for Scott to flesh out more of his book as to what it means to be siblings in the Kingdom, I want to revisit a concept that just keeps getting more focus for me ... and today got the 3D treatment!  Wow!

When I was getting my Organizational Management degree, we used an amazing textbook that introduced me to the Hersey and Blanchard theory called Situational Leadership.  (Even though the most current hardcover edition is really expensive, an earlier paperback edition will get you everything you need to get a grip on this important concept without breaking your book budget.)

During that particular class, it dawned on me that this is so right because this is a descriptor of the way God leads.  (It doesn't hurt that Blanchard is a follower of Jesus.  I don't personally know about Hersey.)  Wow ... this insight back in 1994 was very important to my thinking about leadership.  (My experience with managers and leaders has left much to be desired, as recounted in my chapter of Volume One of the Wikiklesia Project.)

And, much like Chesterton's famous quote that Christianity was found difficult and left untried, this concept is the same.  Our ideas of leadership and management gravitate more to the few telling the many how to think and what to do.  We tend to lead according to our style and strengths, rather than leading according to the readiness level of those following.

When Jesus called on the fathers to put down their right to dominate, he was asking them to influence instead of coerce.  It is so much harder having to consider each individual and how you can best empower them to do their best to accomplish God's will....

It is the way of love, this leading by influence.  Equipping.  Building up.  Supporting.  Releasing.

Sometimes you have to simply tell folks what to do, step by step, because they lack the skills to know what to do. 

Sometimes you have to engage folks, because they have some skills they can use, but just aren't able to take on the responsibility.

Sometimes you have to collaborate with folks, because they are skilled and able to take on tasks, but aren't confident enough to take on responsibility.

And sometimes, yes, sometimes you are able to delegate to folks, because they are both competent and confident enough to take the ball and run with it.

...and then we have to remember that God meets us at each of these various stages in our own lives, depending on the task that has been laid out before us!

So, relax!

Lighten up!

Trust Papa! 

His faithful cHesed will always provide what you need to accomplish the task.  The buck stops with him, actually....




Diane said...

Hi Abi,

You really are back! I'm loving your posts--which I'm catching up on--and looking forward to reading more.


Liz said...

I love this line: "When Jesus called on the fathers to put down their right to dominate, he was asking them to influence instead of coerce."

I have known only a few people who do this well but WOW! are they effective!

Paddy O. said...


Popped back over and was pleasantly surprised to see not one, but a whole bunch of new posts. Yay!

Janet Woodlock said...

I like the clarity of the steps you've outlined... good leadership is a lot like good parenting in first teaching and then coaching and then letting go.

Do keep writing... this series will be GREAT!

AbiSomeone said...

...sorry that the comments have been stuck in moderation for so long. I apparently haven't been getting email notices that there are comments awaiting attention.

If it's not one thing, it's another!

Thanks for stopping by, everyone. There will be more....