In recent years we have entered into lengthy discussions about how worship, spiritual formation, and evangelism are transitioning in the church. However, the most crucial area of transition, leadership, has received minimal attention. For more than 35 years, I have been overseeing the ministry of young InterVarsity staff and college student leaders. In that time I have seen a significant swing in how these young leaders view leadership. The emerging generation of leaders desires a context that fosters community, trust, journey, vision, and empowerment.
If we are going to transition the church to the next generation, both existing and emerging leaders will need to understand and appreciate each other's values. This quiz, developed in conjunction with the editors of Leadership, is a helpful start.
This tool is intended to foster dialogue between older and younger leaders about their divergent views and contribute to greater understanding between the generations. No test can fully reveal the nuances that exist within an entire generation, and you may agree with more than one answer for a question. Mark the answer that best fits your approach to leadership.
Take the quiz at LeadershipJournal.net and then come back to Ur to discuss your findings.
How did you score?
Tally your ministry age by adding the numbers for each of your answers. (For example, if you selected answer number 3, that equals 3 points.) Your total score will determine your ministry age.
My Ministry Age _______________
Ages 25 - 41 Younger Leaders
Ages 42 - 58 Pragmatic Leaders
Ages 59 - 75 Traditional Leaders
Your Age, Our Analysis
It is possible that your "ministry age" is incongruent with your actual age. This is precisely the intent of the quiz. Ministry perspective may, or may not, be a direct product of one's generation. A younger leader may fall into the Traditional or Pragmatic categories because he or she is more concerned about doctrine or effectiveness. Similarly, an older leader may discover he or she has more in common with those younger in spirit. In either case a better understanding of one's own leadership style is critical for healthier team dynamics.
This begins by understanding the context from which each leadership style emerged and the different strengths each brings to the church and its mission. The Traditional leaders were at the forefront of the church from 1950 to 1970. They came into prominence soon after World War II, when people longed for stability and when the church was embroiled in significant theological battles. These leaders wanted to ensure the church's survival, remain doctrinally pure, and lead in an orderly manner.
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