Who are you calling a leader?
John Maxwell says leadership is influence. Well, if that's the case, I guess I've always been a leader. I'm the oldest child of two strong-willed, independent parents, so I may even have been born a leader! If I were in a group and no one was in charge, it was natural for me to step into the role. People often looked to me for answers and direction. However, I never recognized the patterns of leadership in my ordinary thoughts and actions until recently. As such, acknowledging that gift has been a struggle.
When my senior leaders asked me to transition into the role of executive pastor, I was reluctant. The title alone was intimidating, and I wasn't sure I could actually lead at that level. Quite honestly, I felt completely inadequate to lead anyone, anywhere. You see, for a long time I didn't believe I brought anything unique to our organization. Sure, I had some skill sets that added value. But I also believed there were others who possessed those same skills in greater abundance. If I were pulled out and one of them put in my place, the organization wouldn't miss a beat.
In the last several months God has been quietly reframing the image I've had of myself.
He's been helping me embrace the leader he designed me to be, and I'm discovering my own distinctive brand of leadership. I'm just now beginning to fully appreciate this gift, just learning to rise into the fullness of it. I'm seeing that the unique way God has packaged leadership in me brings value to our church. This particular body wouldn't look or feel the way it does today without the influence of my unique leadership style. It's a very humbling thought, but it keeps me grateful to the One who placed me here.
I am a leader and I have been gifted to lead. Do I always feel like it? Nope! But that's a good thing, because it keeps me on my knees seeking his wisdom for how to do this in the best way possible.
What about you? Do you ever struggle with feeling like you are really a leader?