Leadership IS Challenging

Leadership is not easy. Oh, many want to be a leader. It seems like leaders get all the attention and praise. In the corporate world, they get the big salaries and plush perks. It comes with a price tag. In the church, leaders receive the prayers, praise, and attention. With all the accolades, who would not want to be a leader?

Conscientious leaders pay a price. They pay the price with their life. They live in glass houses. Everybody sees them and their families. There are weighty burdens and sleepless nights anxious about a soul or souls. It weighs on a leader that they want to help but are not allowed to, or nobody listens when they speak. The burden ages a leader.

Leaders pay the price of time with their families. The job is not 9:00-5:00. It is 24/7. While others get to walk away from the building, they stay. While others get to go to their child’s ballgame or play, when called, they go. When out late at night, like until 2:30 in the morning, working with a troubled person their wives wonders when they will get home. When called to attend a brother or sister, they drive 2 hours one way and do not get home until early morning. No one knows.

Leaders pay the price of criticism and being second-guessed. It is easy to say, “I would have…” But actually being in the seat and working the problem is another thing altogether. Leadership requires judgment. Not all the time is that judgment black and white. Sometimes it takes time for their judgment to unfold because all the pieces are not in place. Then, when judgment is exercised, their judgment is second-guessed. Yet that very flock who asked them to shepherd them are the ones who criticize and second-guess. Leaders cannot win. Leaders in a local church have been asked by the church to lead. Kind of makes one wonder why they were asked to lead if in the end they will be criticized or second-guessed.

Leaders pay the price, but do so willingly. They do it willingly because they believe that is what God has called them to do. If leaders had not accepted the invitation to be leaders willingly, the job would not be worth the pay.

I am not suggesting leaders are always perfect and that their judgment is without flaws. But instead of chopping their legs out from under them, why not help them? Why not get in there and get your hands dirty, too. Walk in their shoes.

I am so thankful for Joe, Breck, James, Mike, Rick, and Terry. These six men who shepherd this church are amazingly great men. They lead by their example. They sacrifice their lives. They love the souls under their charge. I see the weight of the burden, the price of families and yet, remain positive even in the face of criticism. Thank you for leading us.