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Like Father, Like Leader

My parenting style says much about my leadership.

When my son was a toddler, we took hand-in-hand neighborhood strolls. He would pull at my protecting grip toward the street when a truck passed. Not wanting to punish him for the natural desire to touch a truck, I would drop to my knees, hold him tightly in my arms and say, "Daddy loves you; stay with me. Don't go into the street. Big owwy!"

Later my wife, Mary, took him to a program at a church facility on a busy street. As the program ended, all the kids jumped up and ran out of the room to play. The moms ran out after them, and Mary followed them outside. There, she told me, our son was standing on the sidewalk shouting to the other children, "No street! Owwy! Stay here!"

I was proud of my boy on that occasion. And I was gratified to hear my fathering seemed to be working. Like father, like son.

As a leader, I have discovered that effective leading is a lot like fathering.

Watch for what God is doing in people and bless it.

President Kennedy once recalled, "If I walked out on stage and fell ...

May/June
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