Tuesday, December 06, 2011

Good Quote for the Day

Next week I will have the privilege again of coaching a leadership development time we do for our company. Leadership development is a bit of a misnomer in this situation I think. I prefer to call it "leadership transformation." The former implies skills training when in reality it is about heart redirecting.

Preparing for this time always resurfaces my own journey and where I am on it. I have to say lately I've been struggling with owning and embracing the darker side of my soul. While I know that God knows and loves and forgives me fully, it's often difficult to extend the same grace to myself.

A friend of mine who will be a fellow coach posted this quote from Dan Allender on her blog today and it encouraged me not to run from the truth of the darkness in me but to acknowledge both the dark and light in me.

"Paul calls leaders not merely to be humble and self-effacing but to be desperate and honest. It is not enough to be self-revealing, authentic, and transparent. Our calling goes far beyond that. We are called to be reluctant, limping, chief-sinner leaders, and even more, to be stories.

The word that Paul uses is that a leader is to be an ‘example,’ but what that implies is more than a figure on a flannel board. He calls us to be a living portrayal of the very gospel we beseech others to believe. And that requires a leader to see himself as being equally prone to deceive as he is to tell the truth, to manipulate as he is to bless, to cower as he is to be bold.

A leader is both a hero and a fool, a saint and a felon. We are both and to pretend otherwise is to be disingenuous. The leader who fails to face [his] darkness must live with fear and hypocrisy. The result will be a defensiveness that places saving face and controlling others as higher goods than blessing others and doing good work. Clearly, the biblical model of leadership is odd, inverted, and deeply troubling. It is so troubling that most churches, seminaries, and other religious organizations would never hire a ‘chief sinner.’ The only one who thinks to do so is God."
--Dan Allender, Leading With a Limp

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